Cold War: ‘Built among the hedges for Armageddon’

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The impact of two world wars on the landscape is well-documented and, in many cases, is marked by monuments and remembrance plaques.

But one archaeologist is highlighting the lesser-known effect of the Cold War on Northern Ireland’s infrastructure.

The Cold War refers to the period after World War Two when growing tensions between the Soviet Union and the US led to an arms race and the threat of renewed conflict.

With both sides owning huge nuclear arsenals, the world faced the real possibility of nuclear conflict.

In Northern Ireland, these events may have appeared distant, with the Troubles dominating local news during this period.

But Dr James O’Neill has been unearthing the archaeological imprints of the Cold War on the landscape.

Dr O’Neill worked in archaeology at Queen’s University and specializes in 20th century defense heritage.

He has been commissioned by the Northern Ireland government to record what remains of airfields, radar stations and nuclear bunkers from the Cold War era.

BBC News NI joined Dr O’Neill as he surveyed old radar stations at the site of a race track in County Down.

Video journalist: Niall McCracken

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