18th January 2016:
A major report on the little studied subject of First World War wireless stations in England has been published. Oxford Archaeology's study, commissioned by Historic England as part of the National Heritage Protection Plan, used historic maps, aerial photographs and other archive material to significantly improve understanding of these sites and highlight areas of further possible research and fieldwork.
Many of the 215 sites identified in the report are coastal and intercept stations, which had been operated by the Admiralty, the War Office, the General Post Office, and commercial companies such as Marconi. By means of wireless direction-finding, these stations had the capability to intercept messages and transmissions from Zeppelins, U-boats and surface vessels, decode messages, triangulate positions, and predict targets.
The report establishes the location of the wireless and intercept sites, and assesses the extent to which remains of the stations have survived. It also places the stations in a broader, national perspective by considering their historical context and development.
In addition to the report, which can be downloaded from the Historic England website, information about the survival of sites is recorded in the Council for British Archaeology's First World War Home Front Legacy database.