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The Warsaw Voice » Other » April 23, 2008
The Tomaszów Mazowiecki Voice
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Bunkers on the Pilica River
April 23, 2008   
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A preserved complex of German fortifications from World War II near Tomaszów Mazowiecki is the only one of its kind in Europe. The bunkers were built in the area since Tomaszów Mazowiecki lies at the intersection of important transport routes, close to the Pilica River, which is difficult to cross.

In 1940 the German army decided to build two reinforced concrete bunkers, in the Konewka settlement and in Jeleń on the opposite bank of the Pilica River. They were code named Gefechtsstand Anlage Mitte and their task was to protect army staff trains as Nazi Germany was planning an invasion of the Soviet Union. Works on the construction site were carried out in secrecy.

The bunkers, 380 and 350 meters long, had 3.4-6.3-meter thick walls and contained rail tracks. In the area, there were also other bunkers that had auxiliary (boiler rooms and water pumping facilities) and guard functions.

After the attack on the Soviet Union, the front moved east so fast that the bunkers were not used as command posts. According to local residents, the Germans used the bunkers for storing ammunition and fuels, and for production of V-1 and V-2 missiles and synthetic gasoline.

In 2005, owing to the efforts of architecture and military technology fans, a tourist route called Konewka Bunker was created. In 2006 the route was awarded a certificate from the Polish Tourist Organization for the best tourist "product" of year.

The bunkers can be visited from November-April Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; May-June and September-October Tue.-Sun., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; and July-August 7 days a week 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

Additional information: tel. 0 501 430 321
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