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on 23 November 2004
What an amazing book! This book was worth every single penny, not something that can be said of a lot of books on the market today. Absolutely ram-packed with fascinating declassified detail, some of it quite technical for those specifically interested, but all of it nonetheless well laid-out in attractive, presentable and most importantly, very readable format. Packed with lots of photographs, top notch archaeological drawings of bunkers, radar posts etc and ephemera, this book is the definitive study of Britain's Cold War. Well done to the team behind this book, putting into concrete form a period that is now - thankfully - history (Strewth, that makes me feel old!). Go buy today and see for yourself how close we all came to oblivion - and how pointless - and how much money - was spent on one of the more embarrassing and depressing points of human history. I cannot recommend this book enough - it will become a sought after collector's book. You will not be disappointed!
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on 28 April 2017
Very informative and concise history of the UK's cold war infrastructure and deployment.
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on 11 May 2005
This is by far the best book covering the cold war I have seen. The photographs and illustrations are excellant and many of them are previously unpublished. The book covers the origins of the cold war, Briains development and early deployment of the nuclear deterrent, US bases including a fantastic detailed artist cutaway of a Greenham Common cruise missile quick reaction alert bunker, radar development, air defence, civilian government bunkers, UKWMO and ROC bunkers and cold war research stations. Well worth it.
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on 19 September 2003
Nicely detailed and extremely comprehensive review of buildings and locations relating to our cold war miltary build up. Even for the cold war history enthusiast this title is highly likely to shed new light on the subject.
Ultimately the information within puts flesh on the bones of my previous and long since past fears of a confrontation with those then on other side of the iron curtain.
Excellent work.
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on 3 August 2007
This has to be the best English Heritage book written. The content is comprehensive, informative and very well organised. It is essentially a field survey of all cold war structures built in Britain. It is arranged into structured chapters which form a historical timeline from the end of WW2 to the when the Berlin wall came down.
There is a brief history of why the cold war came about and how Britain started to invest in re-building its post-war defences. Chapters cover all aspects of the type of structures built and how they were operated.
The book covers:
Bunkers, airfields, air defence systems (Bloodhound missiles sites to over the horizon Radar installations), Nuclear missile storage and launch sites, observation posts, the defence industry, civil defence systems and local Government organisation command posts.... the list goes on to form a completely detailed and comprehensive insight into what the public didn't know about.
There is something for everyone - from someone who is mildly curious to the complete bunker geek. The text is accompanied by excellent photos and detailed cut-away drawings.
An excellent book to read - both intriguing and chilling, considering how much thought was put into building the structures listed....
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on 16 January 2009
This is an ideal introduction into the study of Cold War structures, in an archaeological context. This volume is divided into useful chapters relating to the typical examples of Cold war construction, built in reaction to the U.S.S.R.'s capability to deliver a nuclear attack on the U.K. Chapters cover: Airfields and Air Defence, Radar Development, Local and Regional Government (Civilian) bunkers, UKWMO and ROC bunkers, Cold War research stations, and more.

The quality of this publication is of the highest. It is full of contemporary photographs and superb graphic illustrations and diagrams. It reads smoothly and is ideally targeted for the beginner in this field of study. I do have one criticism. There are very few photographs showing sites as they look today (during time of publication), and the photo's that are used frequently have no dates associated to them, which was unfortunate. A then and now visual aspect would have been very useful and interesting.

However, setting that aside, this is an ideal pilot read into a relatively new subject, and coupled with a detailed bibliography and useful credits, this is a must publication for anyone researching in this area, especially for the expert in Cold War material culture.

Overall, a must buy.
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on 18 July 2005
Firstly I have to get the one reservation I have about this book off my chest.
Possibly because it was produced by English Herritage the coverage of Cold War structures outside England is rather patchy.
For example the book does not acknowledge the existance of the late '80s era bunker built at Cultybraggan near Stirling, while it does include the very similar one at Chilmark in England.
That said, this book is worth every one of the 5 stars I've given it (it was worth getting just to see the Blue Streak silo drawing!).
Much of the information in it is new, or at least not all that well known. Moreover, if the stuctures shown in the book continue to be lost it may be one of the few records of their existance.
Perhaps a book that highlights the archictecture of this very important part of our recent history will help towards preserving as much of it as possible.
Highly recommended.
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on 17 October 2012
This well-researched, well-written and well-illustrated book represents the single most complete description and appraisal of the UK's Cold War structures so far available. It covers not only those buildings still in existence but also those since demolished. The scope includes all forms of bunkers, airfield structures, related radars, communications structures, administrative buildings, observer stations, and industrial structures. It starts out with a brief but nevertheless excellent history of the Cold War, establishing just the right context for what is to follow. It then proceeds to describe, with sensible chapter groupings, what was built when, where, how it was used, and (in most cases) its current state. It is lavishly illustrated with diagrams, contemporary photos, and present day photos. Thanks to its relatively large format all the photos and diagrams are a decent size. I am sure the book will be of considerable interest for a wide range of people, from students of history and architecture through to those simply wondering what that bunker down the road was built for, or what those odd now-ruined structures on the nearby airfield were used for. It should also draw the reader's attention to the pressing need to preserve examples of some of these structures. The Cold War directly affected three generations of Britons and represents a very important part of our history.
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on 28 September 2005
At last a book that addresses some of the more important issues surrounding the preservation of Cold War monuments. A well researched series of topics that are both easy to read and informative. Nice one EH!!
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on 8 December 2003
This is probably the most thorough gazetteer to the architecture of the Cold War. Although some parts of the book have been covered elsewhere, none I have seen are as in-depth or are as well researched. It is a facinating account of just how much the UK spent and built on military installations during the Cold War and where they are located. Many of the photographs and maps in this book have not been seen before. It is also an excellent follow-up to Duncan Campbell's War Plan UK, written when most of these sites were top secret. Now this books shows them in as much detail as possible --- the book also laments how much of this history has already vanished from the landscape.
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