The Ramsgate Tunnels comprise a former Victorian railway tunnel and two and a half miles of Deep Shelter Air Raid Precaution tunnels with entrances around the town.
The railway tunnel is almost one mile long and was opened in 1863 to bring the London Chatham & Dover Railway to the Ramsgate Harbour station, adjacent to Ramsgate Sands.
As war approached Ramsgate Borough Council embarked on an ambitious but controversial plan to create a network of Deep Shelter Tunnels linking to the former railway tunnel. Despite initial resistance from government the plan was finally given the go ahead and the network was formally opened by The Duke of Kent on 1st June 1939.
Stories of life in the tunnels abound; from the dark days of war when the railway tunnel evolved into an underground city with over 1,000 permanent residents to the exploits of later urban explorers who couldn’t resist the temptation to explore the unique atmosphere of the “Wind Tunnels”.