Ramsgate Tunnels gets set to open with new tour

Wartime 'Tunnel Town'

Ramsgate Tunnels will reopen from August 1- including a tour not previously open to the public.

The attraction has been closed due to the pandemic lockdown but over the past few weeks the team of volunteers have been working relentlessly to reconfigure the site so it is safe to reopen.

As a reward for their dedication and hard work the Tunnels team has been awarded the National Tourist Board of England’s official GOOD TO GO mark in recognition of having put in place  Government and industry COVID-19 guidelines. There are processes in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing.

Explorer Tours will continue to tell the story of Ramsgate Tunnels contribution to the town’s wartime story but will now do so in the former Victorian Railway Tunnel where social distancing can be established.

Old and new visitors alike will now be able to see areas of the tunnels not previously seen on explorer tours. Visitors can view in detail where and how people sheltered and lived, including a look at the canteen area and a little-known entrance from above.

During World War Two the tunnels provided sanctuary for many thousands of the town’s residents from bombing and shelling. The tunnel system utilised both the disused 1863 mainline railway tunnel, and a newly created horseshoe shaped tunnel running from the East Cliff to the West Cliff with entrances dotted throughout the town, so nobody need be more than four minutes ‘brisk walk’ to seek shelter when the sirens sounded.

News of ‘Ramsgate Tunnels’ spread far and wide and soon magazines and national newspapers sent photographers and reporters to report on this remarkable feat of engineering, which had been spearheaded by Ramsgate’s Borough Engineer, R.D. Brimmel, and the Town Mayor A.B.C. Kempe.

Tours start on August 1 and tickets are available at www.ramsgatetunnels.org or from the Ramsgate Tunnels Facebook Page.