Monday, 21 May 2012

Gimme Shelter

When I was at Cockburnspath Tower I spotted an air raid shelter in the undergrowth. The iron work looked WWII with the wide corrugations typical of this time. The bricks were intact so I wasn't able to see the maker. 

There are still metal hinge pintels in the brickwork.

Couldn't find any info on the internet about the site so I tried the old way and asked a local.  I was told that these shelters were around the fields near Cockburnspath for the "Land Army" of farm workers.

They would have had little warning of fighter bombers coming in from the sea and there are few places to hide when you're ploughing a field.

There are two internal walls in the shelter which makes it look like a toilet, which might have been its other purpose. A toilet could have been useful if you were hiding in there whilst a Heinkel was dropping its load. 

Seventy years of weather is beginning to show.

Fields wouldn't have been a normal target for bombers but Cockburnspath sits at a natural choke point above a tight valley with the main road and rail line from Edinburgh to London in the valley.

An unexpected find and good to get some local info, even if it turns out to be nonsense.


  1. Nice find Ped!, a great post, certainly was a lot of Home Gaurd stuff around Cockburnspath during WW2 gaurding the road and rail bridges.

    Low right of picture;

  2. I didn't realise that was an Air Raid Shelter... we were there on Monday and it is now slightly more overgrown. Did take a picture though so will add it to my post. Cheers for that! :)