Tank traps set up for the Nazi Panzer division invading from the west was bared by the recent storms that hit the English coastline after being hidden under the sand for nearly 7 decades.
These tank traps made of heavy chains and disused railway track were laid bare to onlookers’ eyes on Rest Bay which is situated in Porthcrawl, South Wales after the storms washed away the sand covering them.
The metal structures which were a few feet high were put up in 1940. The British government at that time feared the country would get invaded after Dunkirk.
The tank traps were part of the long series of barricades placed in the British coastline as a means of preventing the tanks of the enemy from moving inland should they triumphantly reach the shores.
Keith Morgan, a Porthcrawl historian, saw the tank traps in his childhood days. He further stated that the structures were visible up until 1946 or 1947.
“They were chains and old railway lines which were embedded upright in the beach. They would have been around six or seven feet above the level of the beach. I can remember them stretching from Swansea Bay all the way round to Porthcawl,” he commented.
According to him, the tank traps were cut down some time after the war. However, he could still recall how painful it was for one’s toes to get caught in the cut tank traps – he had experienced it first hand as a child who was fond of swimming in the Swansea Bay.
Council workmen have started digging the rusty structures out for removal after local beach walkers at Rest Bay aired their complaints about the hazards posed by the WWII tank traps.
Simon Tucker, a local in the area, also took pictures of the debris and posted them on Facebook to serve as a warning for beach users as well as the surfers.
“The council cut them back quite a few years ago but they are exposed now more than ever.
‘They have been visible since the first storm back in January – it surprises me nothing’s been done about it because they are so dangerous,” he said.
But a spokesperson from the Bridgend council gave assurance that highway workers would be sending diggers over the area to extract the said tank traps. Machinery and crews were just deployed elsewhere to deal with the damage resulting from the recent storms and the council had also been waiting for the sands to settle down before going through with the operations.
The tank traps are just one of the many war remains the storms which battered the British coastline bared. War explosives had also been found washed up on an Essex beach. An ancient forest in stumps was also revealed in the Welsh coast.