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RAF VENTNOR

ALTERNATIVE NAME:  CHAIN HOME STATION CH10, CHAIN HOME LOW STATION M86, ROTOR STATION 'OJC'
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A Second World War Chain Home radar station, later updated in the early 1950s as part of the Rotor programme to upgrade the United Kingdom's radar defences. The station, established in 1938, provided early warning of enemy aircraft approaching the South coast during the Second World War- it was especially important during the Battle of Britain. Because of this it was one of the radar stations attacked by the Luftwaffe on "Adlertag". It was originally equipped as a Type 1 station with four steel pylons (transmitting masts) and four wooden (receiver) masts, these were later reduced to three of each. In 1940 a protected underground operations room was added. Later during the war a Type 271 Chain Home Extra Low station was also established on the site and by the end of the war radar Types 16, 24, 52 and 53 had also been added. The station was reduced to care and maintenance shortly after the war. In the early 1950s the station was reactivated and by circa 1952 had been remodelled as a Centimetric Early Warning (CEW) station. Rotor technical sites comprised radar arrays, a small electrical substation, an operations building and a guardhouse, and were linked by roads and tracks. Ventnor mounted two Type 14 (Mark 8 and 9) plan positioning radar heads and three Type 13 (2x Mark 6, 1x Mark 7) height finder radar heads on plinths and 25 feet gantries. The site featured a guardhouse designed to resemble a bungalow, which gave access to a single-storey, underground R1 operations block. The Royal Air Force decommissioned the site in 1961 and it was used by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) as a communications station. The guardhouse, air vents and emergency staircase of the operations bunker were later demolished and the bunker was eventually sealed shut in 2004. Surviving surface features at the site include the Second World War Operations Room, mast bases, a Type 80 radar modulator building, CAA Building, two Marconi Type 264A radar plinths, and ancillary structures.

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