Memorial for the ‘Fink II’ submarine pen
In 2002, the buried ruins of a submarine pen were discovered during the extension of a runway at the Airbus factory in the grounds of the former Deutsche Werft shipbuilding company. The bunker complex, codenamed ‘Fink II’, had been built between 1940 and 1942. It measured around 150 x 200 metres and initially had four and later (1944) five chambers, each of which could hold two submarines lying end-to-end for repairs and refitting.
Prisoners of war, forced labourers from the occupied territories and inmates from the Neuengamme concentration camp were all put to work at Deutsche Werft. In October 1944, Deutsche Werft opened its own satellite camp for concentration camp prisoners. Hundreds of prisoners died due to the inhumane working conditions, starvation rations and air raids. In March and April 1945, the shipyard was bombed by the Allies. The bombs penetrated the roof of the bunker, which was several metres thick. 58 people died, most of them civilians, and more than 120 were injured. The bunker complex was demolished in October 1946, and the ruins were buried in 1973 after Deutsche Werft closed.
Instead of tearing down the huge ruins, the company responsible for extending the Airbus runway decided to hold a competition to design a memorial. The winning proposal by Anja Bremer (born 1966) and Beate Kirsch (born 1966) called for the foundation walls of the submarine pen to be partially excavated and bordered with black gravel to reveal the full dimensions of the complex. The ‘Fink II’ memorial complex, which includes artistic elements as well as several information panels, was dedicated on 26 August 2006 when the newly designed Rüschpark was handed over to the city.
Finkenwerder Geschichtswerkstatt e.V.
Guiding tours are bookable.