BAOR Locations

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Canadian Armed Forces Europe
 
 
 
Much of the information compiled on the above forts is courtesy of JPW, John O'Meara and Canadian Ruhr Memories.
 
 
Firstly a few comments about the Canadian "Forts" where our Infantry Bde Group of different periods, hung their collective hats. Postwar, Canada took up a role in Europe after the formation of NATO and responded with an Infantry Brigade in 1951. The Brigade was recruited mainly from scratch, trained over a few short months and then sent off to Germany, where it was spread out over many miles in the northern part of the country, Hohne, Hameln, Hanover and in many other bits and pieces of former German barracks. At some point in it's early days, the politicians at home with the deep pockets, were convinced to build infrastructure which would house a Bde Gpe of some 6000, together with it's little bits and pieces such as tanks, artillery etc etc. Thus came about the brand spanking new "Forts", which were soon occupied at the end of 1953. The thing that I could never understand was the two Forts which were built in Deilinghofen. All of the other Forts were built in the periphery of Soest and were within hailing distance of one another, brigade headquarters and all the supporting units. But one Infantry Battalion and 1 Artillery Regt. were treated like poor cousins and sent off some 30 kilometres down a great number of back roads. There must have been some reason behind the decision (see note 1), but it certainly has never jumped to mind. Another thing that has struck me is the short life of those barracks, something like 50 years from birth to death. Oh yes, a number of the buildings are still standing and have been put to good use in redeveloped industrial sites, but anything else has been razed. The Germans didn't take them over as sites for their troops to man, nor were they adopted for some quasi military purpose such as training guys who always wear sun glasses, baseball caps and who are forever looking over their shoulders. Now old German barracks which were used by British units all around Iserlohn, together with the BMH, are still standing and have been put to many good uses. What was amusing about the BMH in the 1950s was the fact the old German Army rifle racks were still in place in the hallways, the floors were made of wood and there were still quite a few old time residents still there i.e. cockroaches. Ah well, the medics did their best and all of the children born there, who survived their first few days ;-) will probably live into triple digits.

As promised, photographs are attached. If you might wonder why there are so many with Grenzhausers Cafe in them, well, we lived on the top floor of the place, from Oct 1955 through to Nov 1957. Never did manage enough points to be allocated a comfortable married quarter down in Hemer, so Iserlohn became our Kleine Heimat. We have been back 5 or 6 times in the intervening years, have seen many changes, but are especially pleased that Germans, unlike Canadians, don't tear everything down that reaches 100 years of age. All of centre Iserlohn is as easily recognizable today, as it was 50 years ago and probably was 150 years ago.
Mr Terry Flanagan
 
(1) Both Fort Prince of Wales and Fort Macleod were sited there, because there was an excise ground behind (Übungsplatz). This was used by both tanks and infantry of the German Bundeswehr. I am not so sure now, if the Canadians ever used it?
 

Canadian Forces Europe dependant's ID card.