The West Country's Last Line of Defence: Taunton Stop Line

As Hitler’s Germany spread her wings across Europe in the late 1930s, nations across the continent began preparing their own defences. The threat of invasion on home soil seemed unlikely at first, but as the relentless Nazi war machine steamrollered country after country, by June 1940 a series of ‘stop lines’ were created across Britain in an effort to delay any Nazi invasion.

This book looks at the role and locations of the Taunton Stop Line, a 50-mile defensive ‘wall’ spanning Somerset, Devon and Dorset, and its lasting legacy that can still be seen today across the idyllic rolling countryside of the South West.

An excellent example of a two-storey pillbox near Bridgwater station.
Demolition chambers are still clearly visible under some bridges.
This pillbox stands overlooking the River Parrett.
Some pillboxes are now well camouflaged by mother nature!
Road and rail blocks were an important aspect of the Taunton Stop Line.
There are well over 500 anti-tank posts near Chard Reservoir.
It has been easier to keep some anti-tank walls than try to knock them down!
It would have been quite lonely for some members of the Home Guard stationed in the more remote pillboxes.

All photographs (c) Andrew Powell-Thomas.