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CIVIL BOMBING DECOY C1I

ALTERNATIVE NAME:  STARFISH BOMBING DECOY SF1C
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A Second World War bombing decoy site at Downside. It was built in late 1940 as a 'Permanent Starfish' site to deflect enemy bombing from the city of Bristol. In 1942 a 'QL' decoy was incorporated into the site as part of the 'C-series' of civil decoys to protect the marshalling yards at Stoke Gifford. The 'Starfish' decoy operated by lighting a series of controlled fires during an air raid to replicate an urban area targeted by bombs. The 'QL' decoy featured a display of lights to simulate an active railway marshalling yard. The decoy site is referenced as being in use up until 1943, but could have been in use throughout the duration of the war.
Aerial photography from 1975 shows that the site is located on forest land and no surviving features of the decoy are visible. However, a recent (2011) report suggests that the control bunker is in good condition, at the rear of a local house. Possible bomb craters have also been noted in nearby woodland.
Further civil bombing decoys for Bristol were located at Sheepway, Stockwood, Severn Beach, Lawrence Weston, Patchway, Yeomouth, Chew Magna and Kenn Moor.

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Further information about monuments may be obtained by contacting Archive Services, through the English Heritage website.