The quarries in and around Corsham are a fascinating network of not only abandoned stone mines, but also underground wartime factories and ammunition stores, Cold War nuclear hideaways and current-day active military bunkers.
Now known by the name MOD Corsham and formerly JSU Corsham (Joint Service Unit) and RAF Rudloe Manor. A large military site which sits directly above the MOD's underground tunnel complex. During the Second World War the underground site made up part of a massive ammunitions depot and the world's largest underground factory. Later these tunnels became a government's emergency relocation site and various communication bunkers were also set up here.
CAD is spread over four separate quarries in the Corsham area, Monkton Farleigh Quarry is in part used for secure holding by Wansdyke Security. Tunnel Quarry is still used by the MOD. Ridge Quarry has been abandoned. Eastlays Quarry is a commercial site used for wine storage.
The former emergency relocations site for the government in the event of nuclear attack, the site has been abandoned since the 1980s since which time it has been kept as a decoy site until its declassification at the end of 2004. Burlington has had many code names since its conception in the early 50s, these include Stockwell, Subterfuge, Turnstile, and more recently Site 3.
One of the UK's best kept secrets, CCC is an active government bunker located at Peel Circus in Corsham, above ground the site consists of nothing more than a doorway in to a mound of earth, obscured from public view by a ring of trees and vegetation.
A two mile long tunnel, built by Isambard Kingdom Brunel through Box Hill. Next to the eastern entrance of the tunnel you can see the remains of a branch from the main London to Bristol railway line which lead into the hillside into the Corsham Ammunitions Depot and terminated at a half-mile long underground railway station which was used during World War II.
A large stone quarry which was converted by the air ministry during WWII, the quarry housed the world's largest underground factory. Later it became Royal Navy stores and part of the factory was converted in the government's emergency relocation site in the event of nuclear attack. Spring Quarry joins the south edge Tunnel Quarry, it also joins the smaller abandoned Sands Quarry.
To the Western end of Tunnel Quarry was an area which was the proposed number 1 district as part of the ammo stores, however due to a severe geological fault this area was never developed by Royal Engineers however the air ministry did make use of it 1943 when they converted it in to South West Control, a military communications centre which operated up until the 1990s.
Tunnel Quarry was one of the four sub-depots of the Central Ammunitions Depot, parts of the converted Bath stone quarry are still security classified sites today. The quarry connects to the northern edge of Spring Quarry and also had a link to the GWR main line at the eastern portal of Brunel's Box Tunnel.
Sands is a fairly small quarry connecting to the Southern end of Spring Quarry, it is only about 4.6 square miles. Sands is used as an emergency exit. Refelctive metal check points guide the way from the Spring Quarry emergency exit to surface slope shaft of Sands Quarry lit only be a torch light.
A very unique former Bath stone quarry, the quarry is small in size but has some interesting features. The quarry comprises of two levels which are connected by a stone staircase and a vertical shaft connecting both levels with the surface. There are many blocks of Ashlar which were stacked up but never moved to the surface.
Corsham Quarries Maps
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