Friday, 21 December 2012


I have decided to research into Hellfire Corner for some design ideas and inspiration as I feel this will give the label and design some context:

This gunnery duel, along with heavy German shelling and bombing of Dover strait and the Dover area, led to this stretch of the Channel being nicknamed Hellfire Corner and led to 3,059 alerts, 216 civilian deaths, and damage to 10,056 premises in the Dover area and much damage to shipping. Much British shipping, perforce, had to pass through the bottleneck of Dover strait to transport essential supplies, particularly coal; Britain's road and rail network was not then able to handle the volume of traffic that had to be handled.
The British guns fired on the German battleships ScharnhorstGneisenau and Prinz Eugen during their 1942 Channel Dash, but were unable to stop them. The duel only ceased when Operation Undergo captured the German gun positions on the French coast in the second half of 1944. On 26 September 1944, the last day of shelling, 50 shells landed, killing five people, the last of whom was 63 year-old Patience Ransley, killed by a shell from the Lindemann Battery while sheltering in the 900-foot (270 m) long "Barwick's Cave" reinforced cliff tunnel.

Until relatively recently the layout of the site of Hellfire Corner was little changed since the time when it was considered 'the most dangerous corner on earth'.  Intersecting with the Menin Road it was an important route junction under constant observation and fire by Germans on the high ground.
Anything that moved across it was fired upon.  Consequently canvas screens were erected beside the road in an attempt to conceal movement, much of which took place under cover of darkness, when the junction thronged with activity.
Today Hellfire Corner is a busy roundabout much used by through traffic.  By the roadside is a demarcation stone - one of 12 surviving today in the Ypres Salient - marking the point of the Germans' closest advance to Ypres.
The metre-high stones, made from pink Alsace granite, were conceived in 1919.  The sites of the stones were determined by Marshal Petain and his staff.
All bear the inscription (in three languages): "Here the invader was brought to a standstill 1918".  At each corner was a palm emerging from a hand grenade.
It is not known precisely how many were constructed - estimates range from 119 to 280; many were destroyed by German troops during World War II who objected to the inscription upon the stones.
An original signboard that had marked Hellfire Corner was handed over to the National Army Museum in 1996.  Long considered lost it was located by the family of Lt William Storie, who had brought it home with him after the war and displayed in a shop window in Prince's Street in Edinburgh.  

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