Route through the republican airfield of Bordils
The airfield of Bordils is a visitable space built at the end of 1936, considered one of the most important military aerodromes of the Republican army in Catalonia during the Spanish Civil War.
With an area of 126 hectares, it was built on agricultural land that belonged to the municipalities of Celdrà and Bordils. The construction of the field had important effects, since it altered considerably the agricultural activity of the zone so that it occupied the best lands of culture, that also were the most level, besides causing the abandonment of the grounds of around by the fear the bombings.
The field was operational militarily from the first quarter of 1937 until February 1939. Its first function was the surveillance of the Girona coast, to defend it from attacks by both the Francoist fleet and the Italian aviation that had its bases in Mallorca. Later it became the main base of the bombers Tupolev SB-2 (the "Katiusques") in Catalonia.
We suggest this route highly recommended for all those who love history, with sensitivity to the past. A signposted itinerary that helps young and old to understand where we come from, directly, since it allows us to appreciate the vestiges of what happened during the Civil War, and visit, among others, a bunker, several refuges or the powder keg. You accompany us?
The route begins before the Town Hall of Bordils, where the entrance presides Chopo Bordilenc, the most representative tree of the area, of which the municipality received the name. In fact, a third of the municipality is covered with poplars and riverside trees. After the rigorous photograph of the Bordilenc, we headed towards the old town through Almeda Street.
Church of San Esteban
At this point, it is worth visiting the Gothic church of San Esteban, built in the second half of the sixteenth century and very different from most romantic churches in the area. Calle Almeda connects with Montserrat street, which then flows into the Torrent de Palagret road. At this crossroads you will have to follow the path of Medinyà, the narrowest road that leads west, facing the street facing Montserrat.
Once here, just follow the main road that runs through the agricultural landscape of Bordils, between the fields of crops and perfectly aligned plantations of poplars.
Oak of the Canova
Continuing along this road, we arrive at the oak tree that reclaims the Canova, a hundred-year-old oak tree that lies at the foot of the road. At this point, you enter the perimeter of the old republican airfield.
Passing ahead the era of the farmhouse of Can Cuní and following the dirt road, a sign indicates the direction of the anti-aircraft shelters. Next is the first small shelter. Follow the road until you reach the Vinyals canal, follow the river crossing the Aumet bridge and turn right.
Following the irrigation channel you can see another refuge in the middle of a field on the right, which is more difficult to access.
Once the canal runs parallel to the streets of the Celrà polygon, you must cross over the Cal Gras bridge where you can see another refuge in the first crop field on the right. Here you will find a fork where you will take the road on the left following the risks. Now we must describe a double curve first to the left and then to the right, and follow this path always straight, leaving Can Lirón on the left.
When the asphalted road is located, it is time to turn right and continue along this track that will return to the monumental oak of Canova and Bordils.
During the years of operation of the aerodrome, this became an important military objective, so it was subjected to a total of ten bombings that, apart from the material damage, also had a cost in human lives. During the bombings the soldiers of the camp took refuge in some of the eight shelters that were built, some of them still visible today.
In this last section of the route is the powder keg of the field, a storage space for bombs and ammunition for aviation.
Masía de la Canova
From this point we find another anti-aircraft shelter and finally the farmhouse of the Canova, which keeps the largest shelter of the field to its era. This house was used as command center and troop accommodation.
Once the Civil War ended, the month of November 1940 was signed the act of delivery of the land occupied by the airfield to its former owners, and the land returned to agricultural use, which currently exploit ornamental tree nurseries. Likewise, the Canova farmhouse was also returned to its legitimate owners.
If the route has seemed interesting and you want to discover more secrets and curiosities around the airfield, you can visit the Interpretation Center of the airfield of Celrà 1936-1939, located in the Pagans de Celrà Factory.