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13 November 2014

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You are in: Cornwall > History > Local History > A Veryan Secret

Lawrence Holmes shows people around the bunker

A Veryan Secret

For years hardly anyone knew about an underground building on the coast just outside Veryan near Truro. What was once a big secret is now open occasionally to the public. Find out more about the Cold War Bunker and when you can go inside.

Thousands of people explore the beauty of Nare Head near Veryan each year. From that vantage point you can look across to Portscatho and Falmouth.

Turning the other way you can see the tops of the China Clay hills of St Austell, then of course there's the stunning views of the sea beating upon the cliffs below.

Coastal views

The bunker is metres from the cliff's edge

As you walk towards Nare Head, you trek passed two secrets from the past. On the right there's a mound of land, which is the remaining sign of a World War II decoy centre.

Opposite that are three green objects, sticking up out of the ground. Many have wondered what these are, some think they might be water towers, but their true use is indeed a world apart.

These three green 'towers' signify a once crucial part of Cornwall's protection in the past. Directly underground is a Cold War bunker.

For years this was a well kept secret, but now the bunker opens a handful of times every year for the public to explore.

Lawrence Holmes and his small team of helpers from the Truro Branch of The Royal Observer Corps Association operate the Veryan preserved ROC Bunker on behalf of the National Trust.

Cold War bunker

The bunker has been preserved underground

Access is via a ladder, going 12 feet underground. Once you get down below you're greeted by two rooms, one is a toilet, but the other houses much of the equipment which would have been used in the past.

Originally based on Carne Beacon, the Veryan Post opened at the beginning of 1940. Some 23 years later it was re-positioned to its permanent base near Nare Head. In the same year the underground post was built. It's this which can be visited by the public on selected open days throughout the year. 

Open Days

The first of two open days at the Veryan Bunker will be on Sunday 16 August 2009. There will be tours at 11am and 1.30pm on that day.

There's a second open day on Saturday 5 September 2009 when there will be a tour at 11am. To book your place on one of the tours, and to find out when the bunker will be open in 2010, please call Lawrence Holmes on 01872 278234.

last updated: 11/08/2009 at 14:27
created: 11/08/2009

You are in: Cornwall > History > Local History > A Veryan Secret

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