Churchill's British Resistance - The Auxiliary Units

 

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol and Operational Base.

This page was last updated at 5:21am on 29/8/15

Thank you for selecting information on the Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol and their Operational Base in Lincolnshire. The info and images below have been supplied by Aux researchers Evelyn Simak, Adrian Pye and our internal archive.

Elsham Patrol (Lincoln Group 1 / 1c)

The patrol formed part of Area North 1 - Group 1 which also included
 
Worlaby Patrol  Lincoln Group 1 (1a)
Barton-on-Humber Patrol  Lincoln Group 1 (1b)
Saxby All Saints Patrol Lincoln Group 1 (1d)
Great Limber Patrol Lincoln Group 1 (1e)

The original Intelligence Officer was Captain Donald Hamilton-Hill who went on to join SOE (Special Operations Executive). He was succeeded by Captain William M B Lamb and finally Major H L F Bucknall.
Hamilton-Hill's original Headquarters at Wellingore Hall was quickly requestioned by the RAF as was the second at Blankney Hall. The third and final move was to Dalby Hall and just before stand down, administration was moved to North Bar Within Beverley, Yorkshire.

The Area Commander was Captain D S Parker of Cabourne Parver.

Group commander of these Patrols was Lt H Marshall of The Grange, Saxby All Saints and 2nd Lt W Riggall of Croxton.

Currently unknown.

Sergeant Horace Easton – made Sergeant 31st December 1941
Cpl. M McShane
Pte. G Wraith
Pte. T Moore
Pte. Fred “Robbie” Robinson – a farm worker
Pte. K Scott
Though not on the nominal roll, another known Auxilier was Gordon Beeston. Known as “Whackem” from his cricketing days, he worked as a estate forester.

Elsham patrol’s OB is situated in private woodland at the bottom of a slope near Deepdale Plantation, not far from the B1206 road.

This is one of 15 Lincolnshire OBs that were built by John Sheffield of Scunthorpe with Royal Engineers labouring. It was constructed from prefabricated concrete panels that were bolted together. Breezeblocks were used for building end walls and walls of emergency exit passage.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit OB Plan

The OB was accessed with a ladder down a drop-down shaft built from breezeblocks.

Sizes: 

Main chamber: 3.50 L x 2.30 W x 2.10m H; a 3.40m long passage with steps adjoins at right angles, leading to ammunitions store.

Ammo store – Nissen hut-type construction 3.50 L x 3.60m W (collapsed) Adjoined by 6m long escape passage of walkable height, turning off at right angles, with one end used as toilet cubicle.

Entrance: 2.40m drop down shaft, opening 0.70 x 0.80cm.
Exit opening: 0.80 x 0.90cm

The construction is orientated E/W.

Entrance shaft, main chamber and the connecting passage to the ammunition store all are well ventilated and in excellent condition.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 4

A doorway in the far corner of the main chamber (above) gives access to a passage that turns off at right angles. The passage has a roof made from curved corrugated sheeting and the breezeblock wall here appears to have been covered with pitch. Three steps lead upwards and out, at right angles, through another doorway, into what we believe used to be the ammunition store.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 5

(Above) The date “1941” was written in concrete by the builders of the structure and it can clearly be seen on the end wall, just below the roofline, beside the exit doorway.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 3

(Above) The passage that connects the main chamber with ammo store.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 1

(Above) The view from the passage across collapsed ammo store to doorway of emergency exit passage.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 2

(Above) The view from emergency exit doorway across ammo store to doorway/passage into main chamber.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 6  Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 7

(Above) The exit passage has breezeblock walls and a roof constructed from flat corrugated sheeting. It is high enough for walking through upright. Although the walls are in very good condition, the corrugated sheeting forming the roof is badly corroded and there are currently several large gaps in the roof.

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 8

 

 

The ammunition store is aligned in the same direction as the main chamber but its floor level was higher. It had a curved corrugated iron roof that has collapsed, and currently presents itself as a deep depression in the ground, with remains of much corroded corrugated sheeting, some still adhering to the earthen walls.

A doorway at its other end leads into the emergency escape passage that turns off to the right (at right angles).

(Left) A toilet cubicle has been incorporated into the emergency exit passage, in a dead end to the left of the doorway. It contains two vents.

 

 

 

 

Elsham Auxiliary Unit Patrol 9

At the end of the passage there is a rectangular-shaped emergency exit opening approx 2.20 metres above the passage floor. The absence of rungs indicates that a ladder would have been used for getting out.

(Above) The opening would originally have been covered by a steel lid with a tray containing soil and vegetation for camouflage on top of it. The cover would have been locked in position by a key of the type that is commonly used for manholes. Turning the key would have lowered the cover which could then be pushed aside and into an adjoining steel case that is still in situ.

Observation Post/s:  Currently unknown

RAF Kirmington, railway line and railway bridges in the vicinity

Locally within the area the patrol operated or at the regional headquarters at Wellingore, Blankney or Dalby. All patrols also went to Coleshill for specialist training.

Currently unknown.

Nothing currently.


Mark Sansom, The Secret Army, Heritage Lincolnshire (2004); John Andrew, Barton upon Humber (personal interview); Dennis Holloway; Stephen Lewins CART CIO Northumberland; Will Ward, DOB, the late Tom Andrew.

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