Reply to post: Re: Nobody is quite sure what it was originally built for.

Orford Ness: Military secrets and unique wildlife on the remote Suffolk coast

Robert Sneddon

Re: Nobody is quite sure what it was originally built for.

One of the most striking bits was one of the buildings apparently being where the AWE did nuclear bake-offs to see how well they'd last in a fire.

AWRE (as it was) had plans in place to destroy nuclear weapons in a hurry if some impolite invaders from points East got to the bunkers holding them in West Germany before the weapons could be repatriated (or used). The equipment comprised a strap of thermite compound wrapped around the middle of the bomb casing, a time fuze initiator and a pair of running shoes. It's possible such contingency procedures were tested at Orford (minus the Sparkly Stuff, probably).

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