Annagh Pillbox, Portadown, Co. Armagh

The Annagh Pillbox on the outskirts of Portadown, Co. Armagh today serves as a focal point for the local community to remember those who served in wartime.

The Annagh Pillbox on the outskirts of Portadown, Co. Armagh formed part of defensive stop-line B, which ran from Lough Neagh to Carlingford Lough. The line followed the route of the River Bann and the Newry Canal. The stop lines east of the River Bann in Northern Ireland were constructed in 1940.

Inside the pillbox remains a platform where, after 1941, Turnbull Mounts would have held a pair of guns – either a Vickers Machine Gun or a Bren. Parts of the Turnbull Mount frame and ammunition recesses are still visible inside the pillbox. The pillbox retains its steel shutter, which when closed would prevent damage from flamethrowers or incendiary devices. Both machine gun loops feature staircased embrasures to help prevent ammunition ricocheting into the pillbox.

Alderman Wooley Smith and veterans John Fiddes and John Kane fronted a campaign to preserve the Annagh Pillbox in 2001. As a result, the structure was saved by a government department during the construction of nearby housing developments.

On 15th November 2009, around 50 people gathered at the Annagh Pillbox to hold a short commemoration service led by Alderman Woolsey Smith, Reverend Kenneth Elliott and Reverend David Smith. This significant event marked the end of a local council campaign to maintain the site as a memorial to all who served throughout the Second World War.

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