The 'H - Platz'       


Description how the 'H Platz' was found in 1945 by the Allied Investigation Committee



The site is situated  east of the cleared strip of the range, about 3000 m north of the main firing range.  Local known as the "Spitze Berge".


It is built in the forest with clearings for buildings and installations and is surrounded by an 2.4 m concrete wall, with several strands of barbed wire 1000 m wide by 1400 m long. It appears to have been used for the most secret heavy projects, including the trials of the 80 cm Gun.


Any attempt to describe the magnitude of the butt installation is difficult. There are 3 radial lines of firing positions. The eastern line, firing into the eastern butt, consists of a gantry and track and carries the platform and mounting for the 80 cm Gun. The western line is fitted with trial arcs for field artillery. Between the two is an emplacement and parts of the mounting for a 150 mm smooth bore jointed gun.


Butts are built into a hillside at an approximate range of 240 m Five adjoining butts have been constructed on a 240 m radius with the center butt on the center of traverse of the 80 cm carriage.


The main butt is of concrete, about 24 m high. On the east side are 2 others and the west side 3. They are about 10 degrees of traverse, of the 80 cm carriage, apart of the centre butt. Their height is about 13,5 m The actual impact area of a single butt is 4,5 m square and approx. 9 m deep. The sand bay is only about 3,6 m square and extends to a depth of some 9 to 12 m. Overhead access to the butt is provided by a gantry and removable concrete sections ( a removable roof) 1,2 m thick by 6 m long by 6 m wide. The butt contains some shell fragments 217 mm to 250 mm thick which indicate that the 80 cm gun has probably been fired into this butt, but the absence of a gantry makes it probable that the butt has not been used for some time.


A ricochet screen is constructed before the butts. Buttressed at the rear and pierced by two windows about 6 m. square to catch pieces which ricochet from the main butt. The dimensions of the concrete screen are about 15 by 15 m by 7,5 m high. The projectile passes through an irregular gallery. The front wall of the gallery is about 6 m thick with a 6 by 6 m embrasure at the front sloping to 4,5 by 4,5 m at the rear. A concrete shield placed 40 m in front of the butts has a 6 m square aperture.


The  80 cm mount was made completely unserviceable by the Germans. It's maximum traverse was 40 degrees. Full depression and elevation was permitted. The gun was missing.


An elaborate observation bomb-proof, 250 m to the east flank, permitted only indirect observation of the gun itself. Three rooms equipped with fourteen expensive periscopes were provided for this. A little east of this building is an instrument room fitted with Boulenge and fuze chronographs, oscillographs, theodolites etc., in great profusion.


The western butt consists only of the  concrete wall with three sand bays, fairly high up in the wall. In front of the wall are a number of concrete block targets, and a demolished gantry ran on a track across the target area. The targets had been attacked by shells from 75 to 210 mm caliber.


The firing line before the western butt is 200 meters long with gun positions at about 75 m, 150 m and 200 m. Four observation posts along the west side of this range are solidly built concrete structures with ports for observation. All observation posts used three or four expensive 3 m  Zeiss periscopes.


Between the east and west line is an emplacement and parts of the mounting of a 150 mm smooth bore articulated gun (HDP). Visible are foundations and supports for the gun barrel.


In rear (south of) the firing position toward the entrance are several buildings. Some for storage of material other  as ammunition preparation houses. One is fitted as a cartridge filling shop for the 80 cm gun. Two containing cartridges and shells respectively for this gun, have been destroyed by fire. One contains a museum and sections of foreign ammunition in considerable confusion.


































Boundary Post


How it was

HDP Firing Line

View from North


View to SW

Observation Post

Big Part 1


Big Part 2

Railroad Track

Collapsed Stairway


The Pit


Concrete 1


Concrete 2