Jersey War Tours

Hohlgangsanlage 19

In May 2016 JWT received a longterm licence to research and document Hohlgangsanlage 19 (cave installation 19). Ho19 was a German tunnel complex built during the Second World War. We think, from the work done below + input from guests, Ho19 was designed for multiple uses and was probably never going to be completely lined. At this point in our research the original German plans have not been found, either been destroyed or are in the hands of a private collector, so we are using our standard research strategy of reverse engineering to build a picture of what it was.

Main ideas for use below:

• Fortress strength storage for munitions
• Fortress strength storage for naval equipment
• One of the galleries is a potential site for a large reserve fuel tank
• Site for emergency generators to power the harbour, incase of loss of the power stations

Work on the tunnel started in July 1943 by the Organisation Todt (OT) firm of “Riechert” and later in 1943 by OT firm “Hellenbart” under the command of the Naval Harbour Construction HQ, who were based at number 4 Commercial buildings. The Todt Organisation was a Third Reich civil and military engineering group named after its founder, Fritz Todt, an engineer and senior Nazi figure. The organisation was responsible for a huge range of engineering projects both in pre-World War II Germany, in Germany itself and occupied territories from Jersey to the Soviet Union during the war. It was notorious for using forced labour. In November 1943 there were concerns that the Military Traffic above the tunnel would cause a collapse. The company Theodore Elsche were employed to instal cement lining into the entrance of Ho19.

Timeline we have recorded so far.

  • 26/05/1943 Leslie Sinel records in his diary that blasting has started on a tunnel complex under Mount Bingham
  • 18/11/1943 OT requests the closing of the road on Mount Bingham for work to be carried out (lining of entrance)
  • December 1943 Road is closed for the lining of Ho19, this work can be seen on the RAF photo below.
  • 7/4/1944 Spaniard Luis Nell dies working in Tunnel (memorial stone)
  • 14/05/1944 Electric work is in progress in tunnel C to install lights (Date mark in cement for the light fittings)

The tunnel was still being worked on well after the main removal of slave and forced labours in late 43. We think the tunnel was actively used by the Naval forces after May 44. It seems logical that Ho19 it was used for the storage of equipment as it had been wired for lights, ventilation installed and location markers added in multiple places. It also explains why we are finding traces of equipment in there.

We now have a dedicated blog for our work at the Tunnel, if you are new to our Ho19 Blog you may want to start at the bottom of the page and work your way up. If you would like to support our projects please think about becoming a member.

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German Map from 1943 showing Ho19

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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

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 Hartack Plans
Operation Basalt Plans
RAF Photos care of The National Collection of Aerial Photography
Bundesarchiv - Multiple Photos - and Files
Map of slave labour camps. Kindly Provided by Emilio Pérez
Photo's and information provided by JWT members or fans

JWT onsite visits & internet research

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

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