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Condorrat, Civil Starfish Decoy

Decoy Site (20th Century)

Site Name Condorrat, Civil Starfish Decoy

Classification Decoy Site (20th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Clyde Aa Defences; Condorrat; Westfield, Starfish

Canmore ID 229130

Site Number NS77SW 41

NGR NS 721 734

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council North Lanarkshire
  • Parish Cumbernauld
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Cumbernauld And Kilsyth
  • Former County Dunbartonshire

Archaeology Notes

NS77SW 41.00 721 734

The remains of a WWII Starfish decoy site (SF 13g) are visible at this location on RAF air photographs taken in 1947 (CPE/Scot/UK276: 5304 and 5305). A structure 250m to the S (NS77SW 41.01) may be the control bunker. There is no trace of the site on All Scotland Survey air photographs taken in 1988 (51588: 086, 087).

Information from RCAHMS (KM) 3 December 2002.

Archaeology Notes

A structure visible at this location on RAF air photographs (CPE/Scot/UK276: 5304 and 5305, flown in 1947) may be the control bunker for the Starfish decoy site 250m to the N.

Information from RCAHMS (KM) 3 December 2002.


Field Visit (3 October 2017)

A control shelter (NS77SW 41.01) and an adjacent building platform are all that has been observed of this World War Two Civil Starfish Decoy, which is visible on RAF air photographs (CPE/Scot/UK276: 5304 and 5305) flown in 1947. The site is one of 18 decoys that were constructed as part of the military infrastructure designed to protect the industries in the centre of Glasgow and along the banks of the River Clyde from aerial attack.

The control centre (NS72439 72920) is situated in mixed woodland 30m SW of a path leading from Broadwood Loch to Deerdykes Place. It is surrounded on the W, E and N by a ditch up to 2.2m broad and 0.3m deep; while the control centre itself measures 3.7m from NNW to SSE by 3.2m transversely over brick walls 0.35m thick and 2.15m high, within a bracken and grass-grown turf blast wall up to 4m thick and 2m high. The flat concrete roof lacks a turf capping, but an escape hatch is located in the middle of its WSW edge. There is no trace of a baffle at the SE corner shielding the entrance leading into the control room. This is blocked with earth at least 1m deep and access to the interior is constricted; however, at least 6 steel rungs are visible attached to the WSW wall and these would have permitted egress from the escape hatch. Neatly cut vertical sections within and immediately outside the entrance, together with a spoil heap to the SSE, mark an unrecorded excavation.

The remains of a building (perhaps for a generator) are terraced into the natural slope about 7m WSW. It measures at least 8m from NNW to SSE by 2.5m transversely over brick walls 0.35m thick and up to 0.85m high. A threshold on the ENE marks what may have been a central entrance.

The decoy was situated in what was once a heavily drained area of pasture about 60m NW of the control shelter. This area has since been re-landscaped into wetland and no trace of these enclosures was observed. However, part of the metalled road (NS 72110 73352 – NS 72175 73558) servicing the installations underlies the modern road leading to the car park at the SE end of Broadwood Loch, while another length also survives in the footpath (NS 72025 73340 – NS 72063 73350) passing through the woodland to the E.

Visited by HES, Survey and Recording (ATW, JRS) 3 October 2017.


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