Dodge Hill deep level
Looking down the last two flights of steps into the tunnel system. You can see the concrete stairwell lining construction gives way to bare sandstone.
The Dodge hill deep level shelter is one of three deep level shelters in Stockport. The air raid shelter tunnels were for civilian use, and were dug into the red sandstone on which the town centre stands on.
Work started on the tunnels in 1938 and the first set of shelters was opened on 28 October 1939. Stockport was first bombed on the 11th October 1940. The smallest of the tunnel shelters could accommodate 2,000 people and the largest 6,500 people. Stockport is only 6 miles away from Manchester, the local folk complained the Mancunians were taking up all the room inside the shelters.
The tunnels were 7 feet wide and 7 feet high and had electric lighting and wooden bench seating. There were toilets, mostly chemical although a few were plumbed into the mains. A warden’s post, a first aid store and a tool store were also provided.
As the threat of bombing receded in 1943, it was decided that the tunnels no longer needed to be open every night. After the end of the War, the tunnels were sealed up and remained virtually as they had been. A real World war 2 time capsule awaits the explorer.