Skåne - Defense Line


In the late thirties when the war clouds began to pile up over Europe, the Swedish government and the armed forces realized that war could not be ruled out. For the Swedish part, it was considered, among other things, that the southern coast was a vulnerable area for a hostile invasion and especially from the German side. Therefore, in 1939, they began to build a line of defense from the areas around Bastad along the coast all the way to the areas around Vieryd in Blekinge.

The defence line, also called the Per Albin line after the Swedish prime minister (Per Albin Hansson), was built up in stages. It consisted mainly of three different types of defense, machine gun, observation shield and cannon defense. It was not until 1941–42 that the shelters were supplemented with shelters as well as an expansion of fireplaces and barbed wire barriers. The efforts were put in where it was considered for the moment that the threat was greatest. The main task of the defense line was to prevent a hostile landing. In line with Germany’s setbacks, the expansion of the defence line also came to a halt.

The shelters were not intended to stay in for a long time, like the variant of the shelters and bunkers that existed at, for example, the Maginot Line in France. The guards were only intended for combat tasks and the disposition of the soldiers was located elsewhere in the types, farms, schools and tent camps. In total, 1063 shelters were built along the coast as part of the Scanian Line. After the end of the war in 1945, the line began to be disarmed, but in connection with the Cold War, the line was updated and updated.

Current status: Paertly preserved/demolished (2021).

Location: 55°24' 06.91" N 12°56' 37.76" E (Falsterbokanalen).

Get there: Car.

My comment:

To find bunkers of the defense line, you do not have to look far, it is really enough to drive along the coast and you will find them everywhere. On beaches, in meadows, in fields, on cliffs, in pastures, in beach forests and in gardens. They have in some ways become part of the coastal topography and an element of the beach environment. Most bunkers seem to remain, albeit in varying condition, and most appear to be sealed. Probably because people should not hurt themselves but also maybe because they should not become a haunt. The sealing has unfortunately contributed to the fact that in many cases they have been distorted and in some cases look more like concrete clumps than bunkers. But the ease of finding them makes them easy to visit. They are also scattered among much more popular and well-known attractions, which means that they can be combined with other sights along the coast. Nevertheless, they are a reminder of a time when an invasion of Sweden could not be ruled out and thus they have a historical value worth preserving for future generations.

Follow up in books: Gilmour, John: Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin - The Swedish Experience in the Second World War (2011).