Saturday, 18 October 2008
While most huddled in the Underground, the elite found more luxurious protection from the bombs in secret tunnels deep below central London " which are now for sale.
There are pensioners living in London who can recall long, uncomfortable nights during the Blitz, huddling in the Underground as bombs rained down their homes. With thousands crammed together in confined spaces, you could meet all sorts of people but you never saw a spook from the Interservices Research Bureau, a branch of MI6, or from other government agencies such as the Port of London Authority or the Ministry of Works engineering unit. They had somewhere better to hide.
There was a secret lift behind an unmarked door near 33 High Holborn, where the Daily Mirror used to have its head office. Even Fleet Street's finest did not know who used it, or where it led. In fact, it took selected officials to the safety of two secret tunnels, deep below London, with a total length of about half a mile. They were so far below ground that, as I walked along them yesterday, I could hear Tube trains rumbling along the Central Line way above. These tunnels, which became even more important in the Cold War than they were during the Blitz, stayed on the "secret list" until three years ago. Officially, they did not exist or, if they did exist, they were not located under High Holborn but somewhere else. In the archives, you might find a reference to "tunnels 2147". To those who were allowed to know, such as the 200 or so security-vetted staff employed in them, they were the Kingsway Tunnels " a deliberately misleading name, because Kingsway is hundreds of yards away.
Welcome To Diefenbunker, Canada's Cold War Museum
Built to protect the government from nuclear attack, this once-secret bunker is now a museum and National Historic Site of Canada.
In addition to preserving and promoting Canada's Cold War history, we offer a variety of visitor programs and services. This year is our 10th anniversary " a perfect chance to visit us and relive the experience of the Cold War!
I seem to remember that Stockport near Manchester has an extensive underground system built below the Town Hall.