Torpedo storage bunker in the heart of Boulogne's port area
Wn228 Schlusselblume site overview
What to see
The port of Boulogne-sur-Mer was one of the first large ports captured during the German blitzkrieg in 1940 as their forces swept across northern France.
Once captured, the occupying forces set about building an extensive number of defences for the location which was quickly to become one of the main flotilla sites for the infamous Schnellboot or S-Boats.
The S-Boat bunker stood at the end of the spit of land and initially was able to protect four boats, but construction was underway to expand the bunker to be able to hold up to 12 S-Boats.
On the land behind – now where the port authorities and light industry are located – the German’s constructed six anti-aircraft gun positions along with searchlight emplacements, ammunition storage, personnel shelters, and defensive gun positions.
In September 1944, the S-Boat bunker was destroyed in a series of concentrated bombing raids on the site when over 700 Allied aircraft dropped bombs on the port area prior to Canadian ground forces over-running the port and city.
Today only one structure from the original site remains – a massive special construction SK torpedo storage bunker which stood just yards away from the S-Boat bunker.
It’s a fascinating structure and still features its original, blast-proof sliding doors and railway lines outside where torpedoes would have travelled in and out of the storage facility.
Inside the building there are several workshop areas where the weapons would have been prepared for loading on the S-Boats.
This site had a direct railway link to Stp Hasso, the underground torpedo and sea mine storage facility to the south of Boulogne near the village of Dannes.