La Coupole - Saint Omer - France

Address: Wizernes, Saint Omer (See map)
Telephone: no telephone

Shop: shop present
Restaurant/refreshments: refreshments
Size of the museum/site: medium
Year of visit: 2001

Overall rating:

Description: It was late 1943 when the Germans started constructing La Coupole (The Dome), near St.-Omer in Northern France. The site had two main functions. It was a launch-pad as well as a storage-bunker for the V2-rockets, which had England as their primary target. Some 500 soviet prisoners were forced to dig out a total of 7 kilometres of corridors.

Fortunately, the present-day function is different: a war museum rather than a 'war factory'. The enormous size of the structure, with its corridors and impressive dome, is the highlight of this museum. Another interesting feature is the attention given to the regional history of Nord Pas-de-Calais during the Second World War, with use of text and photo panels, propaganda material (posters, political slogans) and a lot of video-presentations. Furthermore, a V1 and V2 are displayed as well as several scale-models of different types of bunkers. There's also a small exhibition about spacetravel and the technological influence of the V1 and V2 on that.

Apart from the fact that La Coupole is an authentic historical site there are relatively little 'real' exhibits to be seen. In our view this is a bit of a weak point.

Entrance of the museum.

Various propaganda posters.

German public announcement.

Detail of a French Resistance (F.F.I.) car.

French Resistance car: Citroën Traction.

German V1.