Nampcel: "The Kronprinz Shelter"

Eglise de Nampcel - © Collection Didier Guenaff

"Red Line" Distance 1 km


As of mid-September 1914, the village of Nampcel was located less than 3 km behind the first German lines. The Germans soon decided to here construct a command post safe from Allied artillery. They later abandoned this shelter during their withdrawal of March 1917, but then reoccupied it starting 31 May 1918. Just prior to the French recapture of Nampcel on 20 August 1918, the Kronprinz ("Crown Prince") of Bavaria is thought to have stayed here, thus explaining its current name: "The Kronprinz Shelter".


Bordered by a dirt road, this shelter was built into the base of a steep plateau slope and thus protected from direct artillery fire. The rectangular construction measures 32.8 metres long, 10 metres wide and 6 metres high. The shelter comprises two levels topped by a terrace, with each level providing access to a variety of rooms: a dining room, offices, sleeping quarters, etc.

This command post was built of large cut stones taken from houses destroyed during the fighting of 1914. But it was considerably strengthened with ceilings made of metal rails onto which reinforced concrete was poured. This same procedure was used for the terrace screed, reaching a thickness of 2 metres!




Visible all year long.



German military cemetery of Nampcel and of Moulin- sous-Touvent.



Office de tourisme de Pierrefonds et du Canton d’Attichy

Place de l’Hôtel de ville

60350 Pierrefonds

03 44 42 81 44


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Nampcel: "The Kronprinz Shelter" 49.48462702752442 3.097806116394054
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Nampcel: "The Kronprinz Shelter" 49.48462702752442 3.097806116394054

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