This weekend is heritage weekend in the Netherlands. A lot of usually closed bunkers are open to the public. Here’s a small list of possible visits.
In the province of Zeeland one can visit several bunkers of Stichting Bunkerbehoud between 10.00 am to 4.00 pm. In Vlissingen you can take a view through the huge periscope which is mounted in the turret of the Regelbau 143 at Oranjemolen. Unique in the world, and only this day. The bunker museum in Zoutelande with its 143 and 502 are open too. In Burgh-Haamstede the big hospital bunker type 118a in Slotbos can be visited as well as the quite rare communications bunker 618 in Middelburg in the Toorenvliedt park. It’s being restored and in original condition. Guided tours through the bunker park are possible.
On De Punt, Goeree-Overflakkee a very special Widerstandsnest is open to the public. Guided tours from 10 am to 4pm and as an extra, World War 2 reenactors will show the daily life of soldiers during the war. More info via WO2GO website.
The ‘Biberbunker’ (L 487 Nachtjagd headquarters) on Voorne is an impressive two storied bunker. Although it’s been altered after the war it’s still an interesting place to visit.
In Rijswijk, the BB-complex Overvoorde is open. Formerly a Luftwaffe headquarters it was converted to a civilian defence site after the war. More info.
Den Haag and Scheveningen were of course important during the war. Seyss-Inquart, Reichskommissar, had its headquarters here. This weekend two museum bunkers can be visited. One 622 at Scheveningen of Bunkermuseum Den Haag and a 608 and recentely uncovered 622 of Stichting Atlantikwall Museum Scheveningen.
In Noordwijk the impressive S 414 fire controlpost with underground tunnels can be visited. It’s been restored recently and looks fantastic. More info.
A camouflaged 616 cable switch bunker can be found in Alkmaar. An interesting bunker with an interesting appearance. More info.
Two young guys have restored a M 151 Kriegsmarine personnel bunker in Den Helder. It was part of a heavy Flak battery. In a short time it’s been turned from a wrecked place place to something to visit. Have a look at their website.
Further in the north, at the Afsluitdijk, the Kazemattenmuseum Kornwerderzand opens its doors. It’s the only place in the Netherlands were German forces were put to a halt during the 1940 war. Besides the impressive Dutch casemates, some German additions can be seen including a 667 with 5cm KwK installed. More info on their website.
Besides all the German bunkers there are loads of forts and other defence works open to the public this weekend. For an overview please see the official Open Monumentendag website
In Hoek van Holland a 47 year old man was recently arrested for digging out and redecorating underground bunkers.
The man started in 2009 by digging out a bunker in the centre of Hoek van Holland in the so called ‘Roomseduin’. A park which is now quit popular among dog owners, but in the war held two strongholds for the ‘Marine’ (Wn. 25 M) and ‘Heer’ (Wn. 22 H) with at least 13 Küverbunkers. The first squatted bunker was discovered by kids in 2009 who warned the police, because they were threatened by the man. The kids noticed that the bunker was being decorated with new windows, walls, trenches and even air fresheners… When the man noticed people were on to him he decided to use a new bunker, less then 20 meters away. There he started all over again, digging new trenches, marking his terrain with barbwire and even laying dangerous booby-traps with sharp long nails for unwanted visitors.
The new bunker, very well hidden under sand and bushes was a Küvertype 450b. The entrance was given a new trench constructed from stolen fences from the nearby soccer club. And for supporting beams wooden poles were used. Inside everything was cleaned perfectly, while one room used to be filled with sand about 1.80m high. All this sand was moved outside and camouflaged with bushes. The windows were given new frames and electricity and sewer pipes were stored ready for use. The entrance was given a new fence, including a lock.
A third bunker was also found, about another 20 meters away. But he only just began digging here, and now stolen material was found.
The police was never able to get the guy until last week after some stake-outs at night. He was caught visiting ‘his’ bunker, but has been released for a lack of evidence and a confession. The main question remains what the ‘crook’ was actually planning with his activities. As also in 2005 a strange camouflaged ‘hut’ was discovered in the dunes, including a self made covered trench and escape motorcycle with prepared route trough the bushes.
These photos are from the first discovery in 2009 and right after the arrest in 2012. The first picture also shows the situation of the first bunker before it was dug-out.
The paintings you see are in the third bunker, which like all the other bunkers, were reused after the war for housing and the boy scouts.
Somehow the helmets, like the bunkers, remind of people in war.