The Royal Ordnance Factory
Bridgend South Wales
 
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The Task Ahead

The decision to build Royal Ordnance factory number 53 on the Waterton site, and numbers 11 and 41 on the Brackla site was taken in 1935 and 1936 respectively, these now went into the planning phase at the highest levels.

It was initially planned to build mortar detonators and fill cordite shells for the Royal Navy at the Waterton site; this would be expanded later to cover a much wider range of munitions. Appendix 3

It would entail the provision of special purpose built buildings that would be large enough to hold enough plant and machinery, but could still be easily camouflaged.

In the main they would be single storey buildings with flat roofs (to aid camouflaging) with high windows that could be blacked out at night.

Typical Ordnance Shops

The buildings dealing with explosives would be surrounded by blast proof walls, or earth mounds.

Cordite Building

Services, such as water, sewerage, gas, electricity, road, and rail links would all have to be provided.

Land drainage and preparation would have to be considered and dealt with before construction could begin.

Lists of machinery were drawn up, as were the types of personnel needed to operate and maintain an establishment that would employ circa 40 000 people at it’s peak in 1942.

Many of these tasks were delegated to key personnel already employed by existing Royal Ordnance Factories elsewhere in the UK.

Most if not all of the tasks outlined were highlighted, approved, and then implemented.

 

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