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Sunday, December 17, 2006

Ramsgate Tunnels

These tunnels were dug to provide a public air raid shelter under the streets of Ramsgate to shelter tens of thousands of people. There were originally around 12 entrances, some of which were on the esplanade, cut directly into the cliffs, and others emerging in squares, playgrounds and parks around Ramsgate. This meant that during an air raid, people could quickly enter the tunnels via their nearest entrance. One section of the tunnels was formed of the old Scenic Railway which was a spur off the line at Dumpton Park station taking people to Ramsgate sea front, the North and South portals of the tunnel forming entrances to the shelter system. The large system of tunnels is now split into three main sections, due to collapses blocking off areas, these are the Cannon Road end, Esplanade & Scenic Railway and West Cliff.

Accessed with permission from the owner of one entrance some years ago, the entrances have now been all been sealed.

Update (June, 2011): The Ramsgate Tunnels Project, which was recently launched, has been awarded £53,000 from the Peoples' Millions, and their intention is to open these tunnels to the public. This will create a unique tourist attraction for the Thanet area, and will be of great benefit to Ramsgate. To find out more, and become a friend, please visit the project website:

Plan of the tunnels

Stairway up to an entrance

Looking up the chalk well

Inside the main train tunnel

Inside the Narrow Gauge spur tunnel

The sealed end

Entrance to the shelter
Looking along the unlined section

Steps upto the Arklow Square entrance

Looking back down

Back in the unlined section

Entrance to air vent

Concrete lined section

Further in...

Chalk fall in passage
Steps up to another sealed entrance

Chalk fall in far end of tunnel


Anonymous said...

excellent photos. Would love to visit this Site

Anonymous said...

where Are The Enterances To Be Found. Would Love To Visit These Tunnels. posted by assasin, kent underground forum

Anonymous said...

you can get in the other side;)
keep looking.... And you missed so much in Dover.. And the secrets of Newhaven Fort