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Angus, Arbroath, Rm Condor, Control Tower

A Category C Listed Building in Arbroath West, Letham and Friockheim, Angus

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.5827 / 56°34'57"N

Longitude: -2.6219 / 2°37'19"W

OS Eastings: 361893

OS Northings: 743587

OS Grid: NO618435

Mapcode National: GBR VV.070K

Mapcode Global: WH8S1.PTN1

Entry Name: Angus, Arbroath, Rm Condor, Control Tower

Listing Date: 30 May 2006

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 398517

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50470

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Arbroath and St Vigeans

County: Angus

Electoral Ward: Arbroath West, Letham and Friockheim

Parish: Arbroath And St Vigeans

Traditional County: Angus

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Description

Circa 1940; 3-storey, 5 bay rectangular plan flat-roofed former Control Tower. Rendered brick shell over reinforced concrete frame. Crash tender garage with later roller shutter door to S elevation; recessed 3rd storey with observation balcony and parapet on three sides. Timber clad roof cabin; railings and moorings for anenometer mast (removed); cast iron rainwater goods; uPVC windows throughout. Irregular fenestration reflecting internal plan.

INTERIOR: Concrete stair, cast iron banister and hardwood handrail.

Statement of Interest

One of only two extant examples of this particular type of Control Tower with an incorporated ambulance and crash tender garage. The other is at Crail airfield, former HMS Jackdaw, in Fife. Its survival is important in terms of Naval and Second World War history, as well as for its local significance.

Commisioned by the Royal Navy Air Service as HMS Condor in 1940, the site was taken over by the Royal Marines (RM Condor

Barracks) in 1971. It has remained in operation since, currently acting as a base for the British No. 45 Commando. HMS Condor was one of four airfields constructed in the early war period (along with Crail, Yeovilton in Somerset and St Merryn in Cornwall).

'RNAS' airfields were developed separately from those of the Air Ministry and adopted their own distinct form of airfield architecture. Throughout WWII the design of control towers kept pace with technological advancement, with the tower at Condor representative of an early type. The weather detachment, manned by two forecasters and two observers, would have occupied the ground floor while the first and second storeys would have been manned by flight controllers.

The control tower's original metal casement windows have been replaced by non-traditional uPVC units as part of the continuous rolling programme of building maintenance at the base. The roof top cabin has also been clad in timber. Inevitable changes of use and modifications to airfield buildings across the site have affected the historic context of the tower to a certain degree and its pair at Crail remains the best example of its type (2006).

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