Dalkey - Eire 7

During the second world war Ireland declared itself neutral but its geographical proximity to England (especially Northern Ireland) made it still exposed. Starting in September 1940 and until mid-May 1941, the German air force (Luftwaffe) carried out continuous heavy air strikes against British cities in what has been called the Blitz. Around the same time, though on a smaller scale, the British air force (RAF) also began to carry out sporadic air strikes against German cities. If the German attacks lost strength from May 1941, the British force increased from 1942 and then grew.

The technical navigation possibilities left much to be desired when the bombers, regardless of nationality, would find their targets and return to their home bases. In the dark and bad weather, this deteriorated even more and it could be problematic to know which country you had beneath. Even in clear weather, it could prove difficult to determine where you were if you for various reasons lost orientation.

Irish officials wanted to minimise the risks of being mistaken for English territory and avoid damaged aircraft landing on Irish soil. Therefore, along the Irish coast 83 large markings were established with the text Eire followed by a number. This would inform lost pilots that it was Ireland they had below them and nothing else. About ten kilometres southeast of Dublin lies the suburb of Dalkey and there along the coast is such a mark with the text Eire 7.

Current status: Restored with monument (2023).

Location: 53°16' 09.04" N 06°05' 53.84" W

Get there: Car.

My comment:

The marking is beautifully situated on a cliff ledge and was restored by a local non-profit association as late as 2019. It is undeniably beautiful situated on a cliff ledge overlooking the Irish Sea.

Follow up in books: Holland, James: The Battle of Britain: Five Months That Changed History; May-October 1940 (2011).