Lifestyle

Hidden Landmark from World War II Revealed by Wildfires in Ireland

It was spotted by an Irish police Air Support Unit at Bray Head in northern County Wicklow after a large gorse fire broke out in mid-July.
IMAGE Irish Air Corps
Comments

A wildfire that scorched the ground along the Irish coast has exposed a hidden landmark from World War II.

The sign was spotted by Garda (Irish police) Air Support Unit at Bray Head in northern County Wicklow after a gorse fire broke out in mid-July. The large white letters spell EIRE, which means Ireland in the Irish language.

According to the Irish Air Corps, who helped with the effort to put out the fire, the sign had been completely covered by gorse but is "amazingly" still in good condition. The Garda described it as a rare sighting. "We see these around the coastline but haven’t seen this before," the police force said on Twitter.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

The message is one of 83 EIRE signs that were used around the coast in WWII to warn bombers they were flying over a neutral country, the Irish Air Corps explained by quoting author Michael Kennedy in a Facebook post.

"The signs were built by the Coast Watching Service by the summer of 1944 to warn 'belligerent' aircraft that they were flying over a neutral country," Kennedy wrote in Guarding Neutral Ireland. "Up to 150 tons of stone were used in some of the 83 signs dotted around the coast of Ireland. At the request of the United States air force the number of the nearby lookout post was added, turning the signs into air navigation aids. This assisted American bomber pilots in navigating across the Atlantic."

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Many of the signs are still visible and some have been restored in recent years.

"The signs themselves are quite common on the west coast but unusual on the east," a spokesperson told Irish broadcaster RTÉ.

"The Air Corps helped put the fire out and then the Garda helicopter, which we fly, noticed the sign emerging from the past."

This isn't the only hidden site to be revealed this summer. In early July, the remains of Mardale Green, a forgotten village in the Lake District, in a dried up reservoir in Cumbria. Later in the month, the outline of a spectacular 17th century garden emerged on the lawn of Chatsworth House, home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.

This story originally appeared on Esquire.com.

* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.

Comments
View More Articles About:
Recommended Videos
About The Author
Katie Frost
View Other Articles From Katie Frost
Comments
Latest Feed
 
Share
Manny Pacquiao's camp, however, defends the casting.
 
Share
We imagine what the Philippines would look like if Britain did not surrender the country to Spain.
 
Share
David Fincher's anti-society 'Bible for incels' has a complicated legacy, but it's aged better than Todd Phillips' laughing clown will
 
Share
From kickass lightsaber combat to a potential appearance by Darth Vader, this single player title might be the first good Star Wars game in years.
 
Share
Vince Gilligan's 'Breaking Bad' movie asks us how bad we should really feel for Aaron Paul's character.
 
Share
Hey Brew wants to change the way the Greenhills crowd dines and drinks.
 
Share
It featured a callback to one of the most memorable moments from Breaking Bad Season Five.
 
Share
From London to Milan to your local coffee shop, the little barista beanie is autumn/winter’s biggest accessory.
 
Share
Here's how this could change the ending of the Rise of Skywalker.
 
Share
Load More Articles
Connect With Us