Updated August 29, 2004, March 17 2013
La Coupole before 2003 as photographed from a Mosquito in 1944.
La Coupole, located at Wizernes,
France is a huge dome meant to launch V2 rockets during WW2.
No rocket was ever launched.
La Coupole June 2003...
I have to be hounest, I am a little dissapointed. Before 2003 little was changed on the dome.
It almost looked like 1944. Even the soil was original. Now its gone and a new layer of concrete has
been put upon the dome. It just looks like a new dome.
Maybe this restoration was necessary, who will tell...
Ground Plan. Some tunnels were not finished yet. Tho Hospital and Office section is much larger than indicated.
Entrance main railway tunnel.(2000)
Inide the museum, you'll find this model: it gives a good idea how it must have been if construction was finished.
Left: Tunnel, the Mathilde gallery, I had to
return to this site to find out.
Right: One of the unfinished tunnels.
This would be the construction place of A4-A2 rocket. The different stages of the wall are meant for fueling the rocket.
Left: V2 inside the dome museum. Apparently
serial number 4596. No engine installed here.
Right: V1, also in the museum with serial number 478764.
Beneath the dome with its 5m thick concrete structure. It has a diameter of 71m. Mass of the dome is 55.000 tons.
Ventillation shaft of La Coupole.
The holes of the ventillation shaft. They look small but they are HUGE.
Inside the ventillation shaft.
Looking downwards you only see trash and something which looks like a fence.
The ventillation shaft doesn't seem to be in 'working order'... It needs some cleaning...
Left: I very often found some inscriptions
from employers on the bunkers from the 'Atlantic Wall' . No exception
here: Date 1944 !
Right: Detached concrete after one of the bombing raids on Wizernes. These are the V2 exits Gretchen and Gustav.
Wizernes bunker with many bomb craters photographed on 6 July 1944.
Nearby there's strange bunker with tobruk. Only one room. At the entrence there's a L.S. sign probably used as a Luftshutz bunker.
The hospital in 1944.
The hospital now. Many bullet holes are
visible on the hospitals office section.
The holes are there because the office section has been used as a shooting target by local people after WWII.
Left: 1st sight inside the hospital !
Looking at room B2.
Unfortunately you can't get in anymore. It is completely sealed off.
Right: Door intactly preserved in the hospital section. Location near F4.
Look at the 1944 hospital picture. At
the right side there's a tunnel
entrance which is completely covered up right now. This is seen from the inside.
Guardhouse close at the Railway Station of Wizernes.
The guardhouse now. I wonder if the fence is the original one of 1944. It looks so.
The Rocquetoir bunker served as a Leitstand
for the V2 bunker at La Coupole. The bunker was an experimental one
for making the V2 launches at La Coupole more precise. It never went