Royal Observer Corp Post
Royal Observer Corps Monitoring Posts are underground
structures all over the United Kingdom, constructed as a result of the Corps'
nuclear reporting role and operated by volunteers during the Cold War between
1955 and 1991.
In all but a very few instances the posts were built to a standard design consisting of a 14-foot-deep access shaft, a toilet/store and a monitoring room. The most unusual post was the non-standard one constructed in a cellar within Windsor Castle. A third of the total number of posts were closed in 1968 during a reorganisation and major contraction of the ROC. Several others closed over the next 40 years as a result of structural difficulties i.e. persistent flooding, or regular vandalism. The remainder of the posts were closed in 1991 when the majority of the ROC was stood down following the break-up of the Communist Bloc. Many have been demolished or adapted to other uses but the majority still exist, although in a derelict condition.
Between 1958 and 1968 a countrywide building programme resulted in a network of 1,563 underground monitoring posts, approximately eight miles apart, distributed throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, at an estimated cost of almost £5,000 each. The posts were excavated to a depth of twenty five feet, a monocoque reinforced concrete building was cast and bitumen tanked (or waterproofed), before the whole structure was covered by a compacted soil mound. Entry was facilitated by a steel ladder in a vertical shaft leading to a single room, providing accommodation for three observers to live and work, with a separate toilet compartment with chemical closet. Air was circulated from grilled ventilators at both ends of the post and electricity was provided by a crated 12 volt leadľacid battery, charged occasionally by a portable petrol electric generator. New instrumentation detected the peak overpressure from any nuclear burst, together with photographic indications of the burst location and size, plus resulting levels of radiation. Conditions in these spartan posts were cramped, cold, and in some cases damp.
This map shows the overlap of the ROC posts
Layout of the ROC Post
ROC post at Ramsey
Bomb Power Indicator (BPI) Mount
Looking in the entrance hatch
Inside the ROC post
Inside the ROC post
General veiw of the ROC post
Fixed Survey Meter pipe (FSM)