FolkestoneJack's Tracks

A walk along St Aubin’s bay

Posted in Jersey by folkestonejack on September 13, 2012

I spent many a day on the long stretch of beach in St Aubin’s bay as a child and was always fascinated by the strange constructions on the sea wall and one rather odd bit of wall seemingly standing in isolation on the beach. I am sure that I asked many questions that were impossible for my parents to answer at the time, so it was a pleasure to be able to walk the shoreline armed with a newish guidebook and answer my younger self!

The source of wisdom for my walk was ‘A guide to the German shoreline defences of St Aubin’s Bay’ which was published by the Channel Island Occupation Society in 2010 (available to purchase from the tourist information centre). The guidebook takes you on a walk from Resistance Nest Richtfeuer (at the old bus garage) to Resistance Nest Aubin Hafen with explanations of everything that you see on the way.

I spent about two hours taking a leisurely walk along the route, starting on the promenade but then moving down on to the beach for most of the way to St Aubin’s Fort. The tide was sufficiently far out that the causeway to Elizabeth Castle was completely uncovered and the view across the bay was very clear (in complete contrast to last year when it was barely visible through the fog). The blue skies and sun augured well for the coming airshow.

It transpired that the isolated stretch of wall I remembered at La Haule was in fact no innocent piece of sea wall, but part of a panzermauer (anti tank wall). In 1992 the government in Jersey connected this up, though it is still easy to appreciate how odd it look standing on its own.

Panzermauer at La Haule

Some of the bunkers on the island open for visitors from time to time, including Resistance Nest Millbrook which was sealed after the liberation and not opened again until 1984. Today, it is fully restored and the CIOS say that it is now one of the most complete bunkers of its type in Western Europe. Unfortunately the bunker was not open during my trip, but that means I have a good excuse to come back before too long…

Sights on the walk

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