U-Boat pens in Bruges Port
German guns at the end of the Zeebrugge quay (The Mole)
Remembrance at the Memorial of the Zeebrugge Raid
The Zeebrugge Raid Memorial
Remains of The Vindictive
'Thank you' plaque from the survivors of the Zeebrugge (1918) Association
Wrecks after the Raid including The Intrepid ZB FO 142
King George V talking to volunteer women ambulance drivers
The Albert Memorial overlooking the Ijzer line at Nieuwport
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News

We post regular updates here to inform you of our progress in developing the Museum ; the latest news is immediately below. If you are visiting this site for the first time, please scroll down to the beginning to catch up.

Summer 2012

After a long but unavoidable delay, a geophysics survey was carried out in the area of Zeebrugge port where it is thought the submarine is buried. The aerial photograph below shows the submarine location within Zeebrugge Port (it also shows the long canal to Bruges through which the U-Boats travelled from their base out into the Channel).

The area of interest

The survey was conducted by a Netherlands geophysics company - Saricon - and we are very grateful for their skilled assistance.

A two-man geophysics team maps the area

The submarine had been lifted from the sea in 1980 (see photograph below) to clear channels at the port entrance and was then buried on land inside the port boundary. The boat had been scuttled at the end of the war and was therefore not a war grave.

UB-10 is lifted from the sea

The report from the geophysicists located more than one object below ground in the area, but they identified a "large object" that was found in a location next to the sea wall where some eye-witnesses from 1980 say they saw it buried.

The scan below shows a large, deeply buried object in the bottom right, marked "D", which is causing us so much excitement.

X-ray image as seen from above

We cannot proceed directly to the excavation because there is a need to confirm beyond any reasonable doubt that the object is UB-10. To this end, we are carrying out further investigations with port maps around 1980 and with more precise discussions with witnesses. We hope to arrive at a firm conclusion in the very near future.

Previous achievements to June 2012

We have worked for several months to develop the museum concept and to form contacts that will be important for our work ahead:

1. We believe we have located the remains of UB10 (WW1 German U-Boat) within the boundaries of the Port of Zeebrugge. UB-10 was a legend within the German Navy and its presence in the museum would be very significant, given that it was based in Bruges for 3 years from 1915.

2. We have conducted a feasibility study with regard to the technique for the lifting of the submarine from its deep burial ground.

3. We are in contact with international experts about the events here in 1914-1918 and the excavation and preservation of the submarine.

4. There is a possibility that one international war vehicles collector will invest in a building to house the Museum in Bruges close to the dock area where the U-Boats operated from 1915 onwards.

5. We have met with a director of the Imperial War Museum (IWM) and have an offer of the loan of WW1 artefacts for the Museum from the IWM. We also have loan offers from private collectors of war artefacts.

6. We have met with: Geert Bourgeois, Vice Minister President of the Flemish Government; the British Ambassador to Belgium, the Mayor of Bruges; the Chairman of the Port of Zeebrugge; the Alderman for Tourism for the City of Brugge; the Governor of West Flanders; the Military Commander for West Flanders and several people whose technical skills would be of use regarding the submarine and the Museum.

7. We now have very useful contacts with the Royal Navy including the Director of the Royal Navy Museum who has promised help.

8. We have been in correspondence with the German Military Attaché in Brussels who has advised on contacts to make in Germany regarding technical assistance with the UB10 and on how to contact German submariner veterans.

9. We are in contact with British veteran and remembrance organisations regarding the ?Zeebrugge Raid? and the Dover Patrol.

10. We have an agreement in principle that one prominent Flemish film production company (Breedbeld) will film the story and its main events.

11. At a meeting with Flemish heritage officials on 27th of March we discussed the lifting of the submarine. It will be necessary for us to make a full application (Onroerend Erfgoed) to proceed with the excavation but we believe it likely that consent will be given.