Charting county’s military history

Ian Hall with his book Relics of War - A Guide to the 20th Century Military Remains in the Northumberland Landscape.
Ian Hall with his book Relics of War - A Guide to the 20th Century Military Remains in the Northumberland Landscape.
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A NEW book has been published providing an overview of the 20th Century military remains that can still be found in the county’s countryside.

And Ian Hall hopes that his book, Relics of War — A Guide to the 20th Century Military Remains in the Northumberland Landscape, can spark some interest in preserving them before it’s too late.

The 55-year-old moved to Morpeth 25 years ago and started noticing different relics and remains across the county.

He said: “Six years ago, I thought ‘there’s more going on here’ and I realised there were no publications relating specifically to Northumberland. Nothing has been published, why not do it myself?

“It’s increasingly part of our history and it’s collapsing away from us. Things are starting to fall to pieces and there’s no real programme of protection.

“It’s about sowing a seed and making people aware so maybe we can start to talk about it.”

Mr Hall gave an example of the underground hides of the Auxiliary Units. There were 18 originally, but only about five remain now and one collapsed recently.

He visited hundreds of sites during walks in the county, plotting the exact locations of trenches, guns, bases and radar sites, among others.

Given impetus when he took early retirement from Sanofi, this is the first book Mr Hall has written, published through his own Wanney Books.

He is encouraging other budding writers to get in touch if they are interested in getting their ideas for books on Northumberland’s history, culture and landscape into print.

Relics of War, priced £4.50, can be ordered online from www.wildsofwanney.co.uk or by emailing books@wildsofwanney.co.uk or by post to 15 Fairfields, Alnwick, NE66 1BT.

Those interested in publishing through Wanney Books can also email.