Festung Guernsey will use a tourism grant to continue work at Fort Hommet headland, Vazon.
Festung Guernsey, the volunteer group which restores German defences, has won a slice of a £150,000 one-off tourism grant.
The group has restored two large bunkers at the northern end of Vazon, while a third is restored and run by the Occupation Museum. But there are many more to uncover and preserve as the Germans fortified it heavily, given Vazon was an obvious landing beach.
The Shell Shrine bunker and armoured turret bunker beyond.
Paul Bourgaize is the group’s chair and says the money will be used to help put Fort Hommet headland firmly on the visitor map:
“What we wanted to do was create a world class heritage site where people could turn up, whether the bunkers are open or not, and follow a trail that gave you an information board at each location to learn everything about the headland.”
Getting electricity to the tip of the site is a priority and comes at quite an expense, so Paul says the grant will be used for the mains extension and partly on upgrading the group’s website:
“We’ve finished phase two, which was to get power from the shelter where the Guernsey Electricity cable terminated to a number of bunkers from there. Phase three takes it right to the end so we can get power to the shell shrine and the armoured turret, right at the end of the headland.”
The Tourism Management Board praises Festung Guernsey for the unpaid hours they put in to preserving military architecture:
‘The Fort Hommet project aligns with one of the key themes for marketing the island in 2024, our heritage. It capitalises on the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings and the subsequent anniversary of our Liberation in 2025. The islands are very lucky to have such a dedicated group of volunteers working to preserve our history.’