I’ve always been fascinated by the story of the German U boats in WW2, and Alan Turing’s attempt to catch them by decrypting the Enigma code.
I caught the train to Hamilton Square. The U-Boat story exhibition is just nearby. The main things to see, were various artifacts which had been recovered from the Sub, and the Sub itself, which had been cut into sections to enable it to be viewed more easily.
At the center of this picture, is the rear section of the sub, which show damage inflicted by anti-submarine planes, which ultimately sunk the sub.
At the end of the war, the German high command, ordered all submarines to surrender. Its still unknown, why U534 (the submarine featured in the exhibition) didn’t. It was sunk by the RAF, but its mission always remained a mystery. It was theorised it was carrying hi ranking officers to South America, that it had gold and jewelry, and one other theory, is that its experimental torpedoes were being taken to Japan, to continue the war effort.
Karsten Ree, believed it contained treasure, and decided to raise it. There wasn’t any treasure in the normal sense, but endless information about U-boats and life on-board, which the exhibition attempts (and I believe achieves) to capture.
A working Enigma machine (the Sub carried two, one in general use, and one in storage. The one in storage was in near perfect condition).
Looking inside the sub, you could see just how tiny it was. This section shows the engine room, but in other places, there were 2 small hobs, where food was cooked in shifts, around the clock.
It was said that life on board was very hard (52 men in an area the size of a small terraced house). When they weren’t working they were either sleeping or eating. There was always plenty of food to eat, to keep moral high.
I spent about an hour there and then moved on. About half an hour’s walk away, is the famous Birkenhead park.
Its famous, because quite simply it was the first public park, open in the word. Central Park in new York one of the worlds more obviously famous parks, is based on it, and from the air, the 2 are almost identical.
Using my Iphone, and the trusty google maps, I was able to find the entrance without much trouble. It was much bigger than I expected. On a beautiful day like this one, there are few things more fun than wandering around and exploring in the outdoors.
I continued on through the park, and passed the boathouse, alongside the parks lake. Bit further along, they have re-opened the victorian tea house (I think the Victorians would have been pretty unhappy, as its now called Cappuccino’s. I stop and have the now ubiquitous coffee, and a chocolate muffin.
I spend another hour wandering around the park, and then back to Hamilton Square. Ive passed through the underground station at Hamilton Square many times, but never seen the outside. Apparently, some of the best Edwardian buildings in the country are located there.