The museum and exhibits at Fort Kijkduin near Den Helder show us many of the aspects that the fort has to offer.
One information board about World War II told us:
“When the general mobilisation was announced in 1939, the fortifications here in Den Helder were reinforced up to war (strength) standards.
Extra soldiers were housed in Fort Kijkduin. However, after the surrender of May 1940 the Germans took control.
The German navy used the fort for artillery training also because they wanted to used the fort as a bomb shelter. T
he topside of the reduit (Kiwi’s Note: FR for a fortified structure) was given a thick capping of reinforced concrete of about 60 cm thick.
Under this cap was an additional meter thick layer of sand.
The Germans used the fire control post as lookout post.” It’s natural that one army (or navy) or another has used this fortification to their advantage over the past centuries. It’s easier however to think of these places being places of the “distant past” rather than of the “recent past”. One can only hope that it is never ever needed again in warfare. The exhibits continue: this is an amazing place, so much to see and thought provoking too.