WN Mole Verclut

Documenting the past for future generations

St Catherine's Breakwater, the breakwater was to be the northern arm of a giant naval station, however the southern arm, from Archirondel, was never completed. Originally called Verclut Breakwater, but invariably known as St Catherine's by islanders, was built in the middle of the 19th century as the northern arm of what was to be a massive naval station. It would have been the largest harbour on the south side of the Channel after Le Havre. In 1855 The northern arm was completed and work had already stopped on the southern arm reaching out just past Archirondel Tower. However the modernisation of naval shipping and the reduction is skirmishes between Britain and France the need of a massive naval base was gone and it was gifted to the states in 1876.

During the occupation the German forces had built a substantial defence against attack. There were two heavy machine gun bunkers, many shelters, anti tank defences a Type 670 casemate bunker for a 10.5cm gun, this was part of a Ho tunnel within the large rock which had storage, quarters and potentially could have become something much more. At the museum store there is a model of what they could have built with multiple rooms and fortifications (picture above). Tours of the tunnel, now the Turbot Farm, are available Sundays during warmer months and they are well worth a visit!

If you visit it also worth seeing the anti tank defences found On the path from St Catherine's to Fliquet, about half way up the hill. These are railway tracks were driven in to the ground and have remained here since 1943. Below the gallery is a map showing the various positions.


Info from the German books

Location: The Resistance Nest Mole Verclut lies between the Resistance Nests La Perelle I and Fliquet on the land side of the base of the breakwater

Complement: Four NCOs and twenty-two Other Ranks

Unit’s Weapons: Two light Machine Gun 34’s, one heavy Machine Gun 34 and one 8cm mortar

Static Weapons: Two 5cm French mortars, one 10.5cm French gun casemated with substantial tunnel system to the rear, seven defence flamethrowers and one 60cm searchlight

Battle Orders: The Resistance Nest Mole Verclut has orders to prevent enemy landings on the breakwater in St Catherine’s Bay and in Fliquet Bay. Enemy attack from land to immediately engage in fighting

Battle Command: Work in co-operation with Archirondel Tower, La Perelle I and II and Resistance Nest Fliquet



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1943 German Map of the Position

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1944 Allied Map of the Position

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The Tunnel
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German Minefield Maps
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Exploring bunkers:

• Always get permission from the owner
• Take a torch, a spare and one more for luck
• Don't go alone & tell someone where you will be and for how long
• You will get dirty as most are often full of rubbish and may have been used as a public toilet
• Anything you find still belongs to the person that owns the property
Unexploded ordnance is still found in Jersey if you see or find anything that looks like ordnance please call the bomb disposal officer on 01534 612 612.

Jargon Help

Widerstandsnest (WN) = Resistance Nest (RN)
Small pocket of resistance, these would be made up of small groups of up to 10 men with light weapons. They would man Anti-tank weapons, an observation post or a field gun.

Stützpunkt St.P = Strongpoint (STP)
Next level up from an RN and consisted of several RN's. STP areas would have a combination of weapons and different branches of the military used. Examples of this can be found with Strongpoint Greve de Lecq and Strongpoint Corbiere

Einsatzstellung = Operational Position or Action Post
Smaller MG type position generally it was only maned during an alert

Feldwache = Field Watch

Jäger Casemate was a special design and name for bunkers designed to hold a 10.5cm field gun

Sources of Information

German Documents are housed at The National Archived in Washington or Archive in Kew UK
T-78 Roll 318
T-78 Roll 317
T-315 Roll 1639
T-315 Roll 1643
T-311 Roll 27
T-312 Roll 1545

Operation Green Arrows - Occupation of the Channel Islands MOD 584
Allied Technical Intelligence Reports 1944-45
German Preparations for Invasion of the United Kingdom 1941-42
B-833, 319th Infantry Division (1941-45)
German Seacoast Defenses, European Theatre - prepared by the Seacoast Artillery Evaluation Board
Jersey Occupied by Michael Ginns - ISBN 978-1-905095-29-2
Operation Nestegg Plans
Operation Hardtack Plans
Operation Basalt Plans
RAF Photos care of The National Collection of Aerial Photography
Bundesarchiv - Multiple Photos - and Files
A Map of slave labour camps. Kindly Provided by Emilio Pérez
Photo's and information provided by fans
Onsite visits & internet research
After the Battle Multiple Magazines

If we have used any photos or information which you believe to posted without permission, please contact us at info@jerseywartours.com

Links of other excellent websites and people you must support.

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The National Trust for Jersey are a fantastic group and we can not praise them enough for the work they do. Please go support them as their vision is to permanently protect Jersey's natural beauty, rich wildlife and historic places for everyone to enjoy and experience.

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Jersey Heritage look after multiple sites most with links to the Second World War and all worth a visit. The archive they have is amazing and one of the best sources of information. It can be used online or in person and we ask you to please support all they do.

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The Channel Island Occupation Society are guardians of 5 sites which have all been restored or have been made to look like they did in the Second World War. Visits to these sites help fund the work they do and we encourage you to take a look at the opening times and visit them. They also have a wide range of books and reviews, all of which are an excellent resource for education.

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Whether you are an established Battlefield Guide, retired from the craft, interested in how it is done or considering a future in guiding, the International Guild of Battlefield Guides is for you. Kimberley and Phil are both associate members and recommend you visit their website to show support.
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