Monday, 22 November 2010

Stockport's Air Raid Shelters

On the 5th of October, myself and a friend of mine went to the Air Raid Shelters in Stockport. I have always wanted to visit there as I am so interested in the Second World War. I visited when I was at school, (quite sometime ago!) and wanted to visit again.
My friend and I decided to go in whilst we had the afternoon off.
When we entered, the women told us that there was a class in at the beginning, where you go into a small room where the introduction is... I know a lot about the war, so we were asked to start in the main shelters and have the introduction at the end, which was no problem.
The second photograph shows you what you see as you enter the shelters. Long dark tunnels, only lit up with a gas lamp.
The atmosphere is strange. It is dark and eerie and full of history.
We were the only ones in the tunnels at that time and one couldn't help but feel a little apprehensive as one finds it hard to believe that hundreds of people at that time were sheltering in it whilst the Luftwaffe planes droned on above. It is so cold and damp, but one has to remember that that didn't matter as one had no choice if you wanted to be kept alive!
The tunnels carried on for miles, and some were boarded off for one reason or another but we walked for a very long time around them.
We entered where the warden slept, a little room, damp, dark, hardly any room whatsoever to move in and also went in the nurses station which still to this day had all the equipment in it that they used.
We also entered the toilets, some for the women and down another tunnel was for the men...
What shocked me was how many bunks were lined up on eachside of the tunnels. (Some were just benches if one was in there for a few hours.) There were about 3 beds ontop of the other, which were damp and extremly narrow... but all in all, it catered for what it was for.
Being there, just gave one an inkling of what life was like during the Blitz and how lucky we are not to have lived through it.

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