Information for record number MWA9695:
Barby Lighting Bombing Decoy Site

Summary A lighting bombing decoy site from the Second World War, designed to confuse the enemy into dropping their bombs in the wrong place. Documentary evidence places it 1km northwest of Barby.
What Is It?  
Type: Bombing Decoy
Period: Unknown
Where Is It?  
Parish: Rugby
District: Rugby, Warwickshire
Grid Reference: SP 53 71
(Data represented on this map shows the current selected record as a single point, this is for illustrative purposes only and does not represent an accurate or complete representation of archaeological sites or features)
Level of Protection National - Old SMR PrefRef (Grade: )
Sites & Monuments Record

Source Number  

1 Barby lighting bombing decoy site in the QL programme for Rugby. It was set up to simulate the lights of a marshalling yard (parallel railway sidings) and of loco glows (the dim light from the firebox on the footplate of a steam engine) and so to divert bombs from Rugby (station?) marshalling yard. Lighting decoys were a cheap and successful way of confusing the enemy, and their deployment dates from July 1941. Every site differed, so that they were a sort of theatrical lighting show to mimic the lights of some specific local vulnerable point. An associated shelter would have been built to house the generator/s and other equipment.
2 There is no evidence of the site on an aerial photo of 1947.

Source No: 2
Source Type: Aerial Photograph
Title: SP57SW
Author/originator: RAF
Date: 1947
Page Number:
Source No: 1
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title: Twentieth Century Fortifications in England
Author/originator: Dobinson, C S
Date: 1996
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: III
There are no images associated with this record.  
back to top


Word or Phrase
technique Documentary Evidence Documentary evidence is another name for written records. The first written records in Britain date back to the Roman period. Documentary evidence can take many different forms, including maps, charters, letters and written accounts. When archaeologists are researching a site, they often start by looking at documentary evidence to see if there are clues that will help them understand what they might find. Documentary evidence can help archaeologists understand sites that are discovered during an excavation, field survey or aerial survey. back
monument BOMBING DECOY * A system of lights, controlled fires or dummy constructions, used during WWII to provide a counterfeit target for enemy aircraft. back
monument HOUSE * A building for human habitation, especially a dwelling place. Use more specific type where known. back
monument SITE * Unclassifiable site with minimal information. Specify site type wherever possible. back
monument RAILWAY SIDING * A short piece of track lying parallel to the main railway line enabling trains and trucks to pass one another. Sidings can also be used to park trains which are not in use. back
monument STEAM ENGINE * An engine in which the mechanical force of steam is made available as a motive power for driving machinery. back
monument MARSHALLING YARD * A series of parallel railway sidings on which goods wagons originating from different locations can be sorted or re-sorted into new trains before being despatched to their next destination or sorting points. back
monument SHELTER * A structure which protects an area of ground from the weather. back
monument FORTIFICATION * A usually permanent defensive work. Use specific type where known. back
monument BOMBING DECOY SITE * A site comprising a system of lights, controlled fires or dummy constructions, used during WWII to provide a counterfeit target for enemy aircraft. Use more specific type where known. back

* Copyright of English Heritage (1999)

English Heritage National Monuments Record