Marinepeilstande (MP2), La Corbiere, St.Brelade, Jersey, Channel Islands.
Known locally by the more manageable name of MP.2, rather than it's correct title of Marinepeilstand 2. The former German naval coastal artillery direction and rangefinding position (tower) stands on the top of the cliff in St.Brelade overlooking the best looking lighthouse in the world at Corbiere. MP2 was one of nine planned towers that were to be built around the coast of Jersey between the years 1941 and 1944. In fact only 3 were built and completed during the German Occupation. When it was finished the German painted the outside of the tower so it resembled one of the 18th century round towers that were already on the Island. On the top of the tower was a shed for want of a better word in which was the radio direction finding equipment utilised by German naval vessels to get their bearings.
This fantastic structure was visible from my childhood home as I only lived just under a mile from it. It was a source of much fascination as a child, as were the other bunkers in close proximity to it.
After many years of just sitting on the top of the headland have been abandoned at the end of the 5 years of Occupation, it was finally in 1976 taken over by our local Harbours and Airport Department and used for Radio Jersey. Radio Jersey monitored all radio traffic from ships passing though the English Channel. The Harbours and Airport Department had a glass panelled control room erected on the roof which gave an amazing view not only across the Island but also out to sea. In 2004 the radio monitering was moved elsewhere, and not until 2007 was the tower used again. This time when it re-opened it was to be as a holiday let for tourist or locals who wanted somewhere a little different to stay for a holiday.
With my birthday being tomorrow, my wife booked the tower for the family to stay in on Thursday and Friday nights moving out on Saturday morning. I was really excited at the idea, but played it pretty cool. I managed to hide a pair of 10 x 80 binoculars and tripod in the luggage and we moved in around 2.30 on Thursday afternoon. Well I must confess after taking in all the bags and food and drink (we had a small group of friends come round on Friday evening for a party), I was absolutely knackered. There are 72 steps to the top of the tower all of which are quite narrow.
The tower has 3 double bedrooms and a bathroom with a shower on each floor, then on top of those is a kitchen and then on top of that is the glass panneled room that made the whole stay such a great experience.
I have attached some photos for you to see, I hope you like them. It was a great place for a party in the evening, but I had a great time during the day just looking through the flak binoculars with a mate and seeing what could be seen. We even watched the Condor Wavepiercer docking in St.PeterPort Harbour in Guernsey....... that was truly amazing as Guernsey has to be a good 10 miles away from where we were.
Every one who came round to say hello during the day was well impressed, and if any of you are ever thinking of coming to Jersey and want to stay in somewhere completely different with a hell of a view then you need to contact Jersey Heritage. I will admit that during the whole time we were there I felt like i was truly the King of the Castle.
Just on the outside of the tower its still possible to see a number of small MG positions and a mortar pit. A little way down the headland is the Strongpoint Corbiere defensive system comprising of over 8 or so bunkers...... true heaven for anyone interested in German concrete.
Look at the pics and hopefully you will get the idea of how I felt for the last couple of days, My wife Julie certainly hit the spot when she booked this for sure.
All the best from Jersey,
If someone in the know could rotate the photo's that need rotating it would be much appreciated.
04-20-2014 05:31 PM