North Downs Way Tall Type 24

North Downs Way Piilboxes

Side view of the tall FW3/24 Pillbox beside the North Downs Way.

This tall but slim profile type 24 can be found beside the North Downs Way above Wotton in Surrey.

On GHQ Line B Bullet proof pillboxes disappear between Hurtmore and re-emerge on the slopes above Brockham East of Dorking so this strange shaped bullet proof type 24 appears out of place along the North Downs Way where associated defences are all of the shell proof design.

North Downs Way Pillboxes

Plan of North Downs Type 24.
Copyright Tim Denton.

North Downs Pillboxes

Rear view showing its tall profile and lack of rear loopholes.

The brick shuttered pillbox stands at full height without being dug in, this gives it an usually deep front wall because it was built on a slope, the front wall is eleven and a half feet tall, the full height entrance is a generous six foot six high with its supporting lintel it makes the roof just over a foot thick, the walls are two foot thick. Another un common feature is the lack of rear loopholes. Looking at the defence side on it appears to be squashed up; this probably explains the short Y inside blast wall.

An interesting detail can be seen with the embrasures, these were formed using a metal rectangular plate with a section roughly cut out to form a loophole large enough for a Lee Enfield .303 to fire through, additionally a primitive vent hole is provided above each position.

North Downs Way Tall Type 24

Pillbox designation number 83 found on end of inner blastwall and part of a sequence found along the North Downs Way.

At present the condition of the pillbox shows deterioration of external brick shuttering coming away around the top edge of the roofline, inside the defence is still dry and in quite good order, the interior space shows original whitewash on the ceiling and around the inner loophole embrasures and shelves.

My hand drawn diagram of the pillbox is accurate and based on measurements taken by myself during 2011.

Tim Denton 2013