Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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An old French railway line ran from Cherbourg to Barfleur and beyond, it had to cross a very deep valley (La Vallie des Moulins) of the River No. The river was also used to power a water mill.

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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29 June 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Fermanville Railway station.

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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The route of the Compagnie des Chemins de Fer Normans (CFN).

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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German Army Plan

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins
German Army Plan

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Plan of the defences to the east of Cherbourg, part of the Cherbourg defence ring.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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German Plan

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins
Cherbourg defence

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The Cherbourg defence ring and yellow the area we are in.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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German Plan

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins
Cherbourg defence

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Yellow - The 400 series Wn/StP's.
Red - The 500 series Wn/StP's.
The 400 series was the outer ring and the 500 series the flak, radar, artillery, road blocks, HQ and forts.
Uncoloured the 200 series that is the K.V.U.Gruppe Cherbourg see (Sea) defences.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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29 June 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Started 1908, completed 1911.

"This little train, primitive and irregular, with legendary slowness, is not an express. It takes more than three hours to travel, smoking, blowing, whistling, creaking, jolting, the twenty-five kilometres that separate in flight bird its two end points. It is however, who changed the face of the country, caused the development of its market gardening and dumped on its shores, in summer, an ever increasing number of foreigners. " Pierre Birette

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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In 1926, these two lines were bought by the department and entrusted to the Compagnie des Chemins de Fer Normans (CFN). During World War II, the Germans closed the line and used it to transport construction materials for the Atlantic Wall, but also for the installation of a heavy artillery battery on the railway in the Anse due Brick, in order to protect the approaches to the port of Cherbourg from possible Allied landing. Then, on June 21, 1944, in order to slow down the Americans' advance to Cherbourg, the Germans blow up part of the Poult viaduct (Fermanville) which will be re built after the war, shortly before the line was closed in October 1950. Today, the line (IGRF n ° 50511.01N, 50562.01N, 50562.02N and 50602.01N) has largely disappeared and can no longer be followed except on a few short sections including this one fitted out for safe hiking that crosses the Poult viaduct; and the one that has become the coastal tourist route (RD 116) between Aubiers (commune of Fermanville) and Cherbourg. In addition to the viaduct already mentioned. It was nicknamed Tue Vaques (kills cows in Norman) because of the many accidents that intervened with wandering cows grazing along the tracks. 

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Geoportail

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins
Plan

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2 x Vf58c Tobruks.
1 x Vf
1 x Vf/MG
1 x SK

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Tobruk.

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Vf type bunker.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins
Tobruk

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Well hidden in the undergrowth.

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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16 November 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins
Tobruk

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Vf58c type Tobruk.

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Vf58c type Tobruk plan.

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Vf58c type Tobruk elevation.

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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16 November 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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The rest to lean on with your elbow when firing the gun inside a Tobruk. The whole unit turns on a slide 360°.

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Tobruk half.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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16 November 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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1 x Vf, 1 x Vf/MG, 1 x SK - these bunkers would have been small concreted boxes made probably by the soldiers using them. I have yet to find them.

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Vf/MG.

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Vf/MG.

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A type of Vf Verstarkt feldmässig (Reinforced in the field) or SK Sonder Konstruktion (Special construction).

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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16 November 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Billet

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Cherbourg to Barfleur time table.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Post card

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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A most beautifully designed viaduct.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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16 November 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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The view over the top of the Viaduct.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Post card

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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La Normandie Pittoresque.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Photographer Nicholas Rudzaik US Army- Picture Courtesy of Jim Swan

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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Nicholas Rudzaik must have been attached to a unit that went around many of the captured defences and photographed them. He with foresight kept some pictures for himself and through that we can now see what these parts of Normandy looked like. Jim Swan kindly has allowed me to use these photos.

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The un named characters with Nicholas Rudzaik.

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The right hand man looks very like a member of the RAF, his uniform looks blue and it is a British battle dress.

Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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16 November 2001

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Wn406 Viaduc des Moulins

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