RAF Sennen (Skewjack) Chain Home CH 17

Royal Air Force Sennen built in 1940 as the RAF Regiment Barracks for the greater Chainhome Station CH 17. After the RAF closed the camp, it became a "Butlin's" style holiday camp. Later taken over as Skewjack Surf Village. This photo was take during it's Holiday camp period.




Trebehor Farm hamlet taken from the 360ft link aerial masts. Click on the photo to enlarge and you will see an earth mound on the left hand side of the buildings. This was the sub station shown on the site drawing dated 7th April 1944 (building number 11. The drawing will eventually be published here when reduce by scaning. opposite the mound can be seen some form of double towered building. I see it is annotated on the site plan as 55 but with nothing stated in the site index.


You would be forgiven if you did not recognise the Operations room. How it has changed and No the lady isn't a WAAF

Copyright Apex



This is more likely 1950's but is certainly RAF Sennen from local archives.














End of an Erra


The masts of RAF Sennen are finally felled. There are a number of smaller masts visible above the roof tops.

Click to enlarge


RAF Sennen and Sennen Cove

Original Trevescan CH17 (Pre Skewjack)


At long last the early site for the failed chain home site at Land's End has been located in the hamlet of Trevescan. I have found a farmer who remembers that it consisted of a trailer/container type structure with a cluster of aerial towers in a field just off the road on the Trevilly side of the road. It wasn't there for long. Memory confuses as to whether it was Army or RAF. I do know that in the really early days of the war the Army did have RADAR sites around the coast but eventually these came under Air Ministry control. The Trevescan site was early Chain Home 17, attempting to work low level interception. However this was a total failure. CH17 was then re-located to the Skewjack area and continued as high level interception. In early 1941 RAF Marks Castle was constructed for lower level interception. Extreme low interception did not come in until 1943 with the siting of Chain Home Extra Low on Carn Brae hill known as CHEL K169. John Harding who was stationed at RAF Marks Castle in 1941 remembered seeing aerials some hundreds of yards away, so the mystery is solved with the location of the Trevescan site 1200 yds away.


An original Air Ministry drawing of RAF Sennen together with the layout of Sennen Cove.

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