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Stp Dahlie

Fort des Dunes site with amazing wartime history

Stp Dahlie site overview

What to see

There has been a fort located here on the high ground to the east of Dunkirk since 1878 and Fort Leffrinckoucke, or Fort des Dunes as it is now called, saw action at both ends of the war.
This rectangular fort with its own moat was used as a refuge and HQ where retreating French troops would be reorganised to slow the advancing German forces during Operation Dynamo and the evacuation of Dunkirk.
On June 2 and 3, 1940 Luftwaffe bombers hit the fort killing an estimated 200 soldiers before taking control of the site on June 4.
It became Stp Dahlie and was a supply/rations depot for the area, including supplying the massive MKB Malo Terminus or Batterie Leffrinckoucke on the coast to the north. The original barracks and ammunition stores were used by the occupying forces.
This depot site wasn’t without its defences though and the fort was further fortified with the addition of a 2cm anti-aircraft gun position, a R612 casemate for a 7.5cm cannon, and a series of machine gun positions.
A plinth for a Wurzburg Riese radar system was also built on the high ground within the fortress walls, giving early warning on Allied attacks.
At the end of the war, this site was part of the Siege of Dunkirk where around 10,000 German troops held out until May 9, 1945, when they surrendered to surrounding Allied forces. It’s estimated that around 3,700 German POWs were held in the Dunkirk area, some of which were captives inside the Fort des Dunes itself.
Fort des Dunes is now a memorial site and is open to the public most weekends during the summer months. It’s a fascinating site with many stories of its different inhabitants.


Directions to bunker sites in this area...

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