Saturday, 16 June 2012

Audlem and the Secret Bunker

On Thursday last having negotiated the fifteen locks down into Audlem we tied up in the early afternoon a couple of miles further on at very pleasant visitor moorings near Mickley Bridge.


001  Approaching Audlem Top Lock

Approaching Audlem Top Lock


002  Looking down the Audlem Flight of fifteen

Looking down the Audlem Flight


004  'The Shroppie Fly' at Audlem

‘The Shroppie Flyer’ at Audlem


In between the showers we walked across the fields to the Hack Green Secret Bunker as shown in Nicholson’s Guide.

… And what a strange eerie place it was too!

Deep in the middle of a wet quiet meadow with placid cows and sheep grazing peacefully nearby we came across this large rectangular concrete building surrounded with a high barbed wire fence which reminded me of a set out of ‘Dr Who’. It had been built during the ‘Cold War’ when at any moment we could have been devastated by long range nuclear weapons. This was the place that the government would have retreated to to keep them free of the effects of the blasts. There was a self supporting little village within the thick concrete walls.


Signage for Roots and Wings 048

The Information Board

It is now open to the public as a museum and Janis and I decided to investigate.


Signage for Roots and Wings 056

The original Dalek?


Signage for Roots and Wings 057

Goodbye cruel World

Of course there is no daylight to be seen anywhere inside and bright tungsten lights glare into one’s eyes almost continuously. Alternatively other strobe-like effects flash from 1970’s and 1980’s electrical spy equipment that now appears as obsolete and eerie to today’s technology as the hair styles and clothes of the mannequins do that man the rather ghostly settings. And overall there is the slightly acrid smell of dampness that adds to the feeling of unease about the place.

It was a most interesting experience to see everything but it was wonderful to return to beautiful daylight even though it was filtered through an overcast sky heavy with rain showers. Thoughts of what might have happened then, make me eternally grateful for what I have now come rain or come shine.

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