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Cold War Cumbria

As well as being the production facility (at Sellafield) for Britain's plutonium for the 1950's Cold War, Cumbria also was home to Britain's foray into developing a missile to carry such nuclear hell to its destination.
In the 1950s British high tech industry was gearing up to production of an intermediate range ballistic missile, Blue Streak. On Spadeadam Moor, Cumbria test areas were completed in under three years at a cost of £20 million. Over 8,000 acres Spadeadam had its own admin area and liquid oxygen plant and static missile testing areas before the completed missiles were sent to Woomera in Australia for testing. Housing was specifically built for the highly trained Spadeadam staff at nearby Brampton. The engines were also tested at secret facilities on the cliffs at the Needles on the Isle of Wight. In 1960 Blue Streak was cancelled.
Just outside Carlisle the former RAF Crosby (and now Carlisle Airport) is home to and Avro Vulcan B.2 XJ823 Bomber. Synonymous with the Cold War and Britain’s nuclear deterrent of the 1960?s, the impressive size of Avro’s delta winged bomber is testament to the ingenuity and skills of the post war British aircraft industry. Find out more at

Vulcan bomber

It is also thought nuclear depth charges, for positioning in the Northern Approaches to Russia were stored at a NATO facility at Broughton Moor in Cumbria. Images from Broughton Moor ( the 'Dump')
In Eskdale an underground bunker was one of many across England to be manned for radioactive contamination monitoring in the event of an all-our nuclear war.

Blue Streak

Testing Blue Streak at Spadeadam

V Bomber

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