Cottingham South Auxiliary Unit Patrol
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updated at 8:44am on 14/9/12
A patrol report on the Cottingham South Auxiliary Unit
Patrol in East Ridings by Andy Gwynne. If you can help with any
info please contact us.
Research into this patrol and its training is ongoing. The information below is published
from various sources and is by no means conclusive. If information is not
listed below it does not necessarily mean the information is not out there but normally means
CART researchers have not found it yet.
If you have any information on this patrol or can help with research in this area please do
Cottingham South Patrol was part of Number 8 Group. Group 8 consisted of Cottingham South,
Cottingham North and Bilton Patrols.
It is unknown when the patrol was
Commanded by Captain Stanley Holmes DOB 10/04/1896, a Provision Merchant at Cottingham. The
Group Sergeant was Sgt Robert E Williams of Hull DOB 12/05/1901, a works foreman. He had originally been a member
of the South Cave Patrol when he lived in that area.
The following are the entries found in the Nominal Roll.
Members 1944 List
Date of Birth
|Sgt George E Bolder
|Cpl John N Nunn
| Pte William Kettley
Original Members of the Patrol
Cpl Arthur Singleton
Pte Cecil Osbourne
Pte Frederick Paddison
Pte Thomas Holmes
Pte W.E. Williams
The OB was said to have been within an old Chalk Quarry in the grounds of Castle Hill Hospital. The quarry dated
back to the early part of the 19th Century. In the latter part of the twentieth Century the quarry was filled with
Landfill and nothing remains of the site except what looks like pasture. Two OP’s were found, a tree type
platform which has now been felled and a underground OP that was excavated. It is not known where this location
lies but with the Hospital grounds continually extending it is thought it may be lost.
An Article was found with reference to Cottingham South Patrol on Aux Unit News and many
thanks go to David Waller for putting me in touch with Lindsay Campbell whose permission was sought to use her
article “Hedgerows and Woodlands”. Produced in its original form.
We had some fantastic summers in the '70s, ideal for teenagers and children during the school holidays.
As a teenager, I wasn't too concerned about the summer weather unless I was out sketching. I
was a bit of a loner in those days, and preferred spending my spare time wandering the hedgerows, woodlands and
fields around my home area of Cottingham in East Yorkshire, recording the local wildlife and sketching the historic
buildings before someone demolished them.
“Why do other teenage girls bring home boyfriends?" my dad used to say, “And my daughter
brings home squirrel bones.”
I may not have been bringing home boyfriends, but I was a typical teenager in that I would
get uppity and almost militant about subjects close to my heart. Amongst those subjects were the man-made litter
and debris I found in my beloved hedgerows and woodlands - tin cans, discarded hub caps, a lump of abandoned tarmac
from road mending, a length of barbed wire half buried in the turf, the rotted remnants of corrugated iron and a
crumbling section of timber sticking out of the ground. I was too shy to go knocking on the farmer's door to
complain, but I'd pick up what I could and if my bicycle basket would carry it, I'd convey it to the nearest waste
On one occasion I was dismayed to see the beauty of a tree scarred by some sort of wire
which had been pinned to its trunk. The bark had grown around it almost, but I sighed in disappointment that anyone
could treat the world around them so cruelly.
On another occasion I was equally dismayed to see when I arrived at a disused chalk quarry
where I knew there was a fantastic view out towards Skidby that a group of boys were 'playing' in the quarry
bottom. There was a local tradition that the mouth of a tunnel emerged in the quarry and that the other end went to
the old Castle Hill manor-house - or at least it did before the hospital there was built. There was too much debris
(rolls of wire, corrugated iron, and ceramic pipes) around the quarry bottom now though and. the boys were being
too rambunctious for me to investigate, so I climbed to the top edge and sketched the scene instead. On another
occasion I sketched the Victorian gothic tower remaining from the old Castle Hill manor-house and was almost as
grieved that it too appeared to have half buried rusty bits of metal and wire marring its beauty. Those scorching
summers passed and each autumn when I went back to school I used to sneak round by the old greenhouse - it always
looked older than the school to me and fascinated me because of that. It had the remains of something else there as
well - I could never pin it down but there was something about that greenhouse, something else on the site that I
always felt no-one else recognised and the gardener would never allow the pupils (even the much respected Upper
Sixth) to go there unless a teacher were present.
Everything's changed now. The quarry has apparently been filled in, the tower I think has
been demolished and the hedgerows and fields which I knew have been covered by houses and wider roads.
Other things have changed as well. Time and the Official Secrets Act are two of them. For those little sites
which I came across on my forays into the East Yorkshire countryside, all the corrugated iron, barbed wire, lumps
of concrete and bits of timber and brick were far from debris dumped by inconsiderate farmers.
They were the remains of Auxiliary Unit bunkers and observational posts, filled in or abandoned after the
I didn't know at the time, but my own grandfather had been a Special Duties member, tapping away on his Morse
code machine in the attic thirty five years previously, while the bombs dropped around him. He was one of only
three in Hull and he survived the Luftwaffe's depredations. Even the school greenhouse was more than I could have
guessed - there used to be an Auxiliary Unit bunker below it and the GP who'd delivered me was a patrol man based
The one thing which remained true to my teenage instincts was something which only the irony of history can
create. All that man-made debris in the countryside, scarring its beauty and marring the greenery around me. How
could anyone treat the world around them so cruelly I'd thought at fourteen years old -only a generation before,
one despotic little excuse for humanity in Berlin had decided to treat the world around him more cruelly than many
humans can conceive.
Had mainland Britain been invaded, the rusting, rotting remains of the Auxiliary Unit bunkers which I was
inadvertently stumbling across in my ecology studies would have played a vital part in the defense of Britain
against that one despot's efforts.
Time has passed, the countryside has changed and I now live over 350 miles away from Cottingham, but remain
intensely proud of every man, woman and youth who served in the auxiliary units.
** Pte John G Lindsay was a local GP and served in the Cottingham North Patrol
Looking North East from the old chalk quarry Nr Castle Hill Hospital, Cottingham.
East Ridings Secret Resistance
by Alan Williamson, Stephen Lewins CART CIO, Mark Sansom
Lindsay Campbell, David Waller
If you can help with any info please