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.