Paddock

Churchill's Secret Bunker


Useful Information

Location: Neasden, north-west London. Brook Road, Dollis Hill, London, NW2.http://www.streetmap.co.uk/streetmap.dll?
 Location by UK Streetmap
Open: twice a year.
06-MAY-2004, only with reservation. [2004]
Fee:  
Classification:  World War II Bunker
Light: electric.
Dimension: D=12m, 40 rooms, 2 levels.
Guided tours:  
Photography:  
Accessibility:  
Bibliography:  
Address: Churchill's Secret Bunker, Network Housing Association Limited, Network House, 10-12 Neeld Parade, Wembley Hill Road, Wembley, Middlesex HA9 6QU. Tel: +44-20-8900-0185, Fax: +44-20-8902-7140, E-mail: contact.
Reservation 2004: Maria, E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
Last update:$Date: 2015/08/30 21:55:08 $

History

 
29-SEP-1940Churchill visited Paddock for a trial run.
1997Network Housing Association purchased the site from the London Borough of Brent.
2002Bunker first opened to the public.

Description

Churchill's Secret Bunker was really secret. There are War Rooms under Whitehall, where he held cabinet meetings and slept. But he also had another bunker in Neasden in north-west London.

The bunker, codenamed Paddock, was an alternative to the  Cabinet War Rooms at Whitehall, which would not have survived a direct hit. This bunker was deep enough to be completely bombproof. Paddock was meant to be Churchill's last refuge if the Battle of Britain had been lost. It was designed to accommodate the entire war cabinet and 200 staff.

Paddock was so secret, that Churchill only described it as "near Hampstead" in his memoirs. But he used it only once, for a trial, because he thought it was too far away from the city. And it was rather damp too.

After being the property of the London Borough of Brent, the bunker was sold to Network Housing Association in 1997, as part of a project to develop affordable housing. But the permission included an obligation that the bunker be opened to the public under the London Open House Scheme. The bunker is open two days a year for three years after completion of the works.

The works to restore the bunker required £ 40,000, which were payed by Network Housing Association. However, they seem not really interested in opening the bunker to the public, as they do not open it more than absolutely necessary. The two days for 2002 were in April.


See also


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