The Coastwatching Service

Published in 20th-century / Contemporary History, Features, Issue 3 (May/Jun 2008), The Emergency, Volume 16

Lookout posts (LOPs) such as these at Dunabrattin, Co. Waterford (top), and Clogher Head, Co. Louth (bottom), were located every ten miles or so along the Irish coastline. (National Archives of Ireland)

Lookout posts (LOPs) such as these at Dunabrattin, Co. Waterford (top), and Clogher Head, Co. Louth (bottom), were located every ten miles or so along the Irish coastline. (National Archives of Ireland)

Established in 1939 by the Defence Forces to provide landward defence for a country with no naval service, the Coastwatching Service was an unarmed military force numbering approximately 700 and made up of army reservists and men with maritime experience who joined up after the outbreak of war. Manning 83 LOPs, one located every ten miles or so along the coastline, the coastwatchers were the Defence Forces’ primary marine and air intelligence-gathering system during ‘the Emergency’.

 

 

 

 

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