In June 1939 the Duke of Kent opened the first section of what would become the largest civilian air raid shelter in Britain.
The brainchild of Ramsgate’s Borough Surveyor R D. Brimmell and championed by the town’s mayor A.B.C. Kempe the air raid precaution tunnel formed a horse shoe under Ramsgate, connecting the old Victorian railway tunnel with the West Cliff.
During World War Two it saved countless lives during the Ramsgate Blitz and other aerial and shelling attacks.
This year, 2019, is the 80th anniversary of the opening of the Wartime Tunnels and to commemorate the event this June, Ramsgate Tunnels are hosting a free public event featuring ‘A Salute to the 1940’s’ variety show, a collectors market, home front cooking demonstrations, re-enactors, an appearance of Dad’s Army, and lots more.
As well as the entertainment both inside and outside the tunnel there will be a special unveiling of plaques commemorating the efforts by both Brimmell and Kempe to secure the safety and survival of the townsfolk during the dark days of the 1940s.
Further details of the event to be held on June 2 will be available in due course but in the meantime the Tunnels welcome expressions of interest from anyone selling vintage collectables who may be interested in having a stall in the vintage market.
Further details may be obtained by calling 01843 855123 or emailing [email protected]