Bygone days relived at Clifford Road

BELOW a playground at one Ipswich school lies a fascinating history lesson in the hardships of the Second World.A bomb shelter, a 34ft-long tunnel and even a London tube train form part of the exhibits of a subterranean museum underneath Clifford Road Primary School in Ipswich.

By James Fraser

BELOW a playground at one Ipswich school lies a fascinating history lesson in the hardships of the Second World.

A bomb shelter, a 34ft-long tunnel and even a London tube train form part of the exhibits of a subterranean museum underneath Clifford Road Primary School in Ipswich.

Visitors can walk into an authentic bomb shelter – one of three shelters on the site – and pass an air raid patrol warden's post as they walk through the tunnel.


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Photographs, wartime rations and other exhibits from the home front are on display – as well as military paraphernalia such as shell cases, uniforms and grenades.

The terrifying sounds of a bomb attack, recorded by the BBC during the war, is played at regular intervals to give a taste of the tension that must have permeated the atmosphere when the shelters were being used.

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There is also a section of a 1938 London Underground tube train that visitors can step into - as they step back in time.

Guide Reg Farrow, 74, who served as a fireman on the railways during the war said The Clifford Road Air Raid shelter, which was discovered in 1989, gave a fascinating insight into life between 1939-45.

"We have had lots of school groups visit who are very interested in the museum."

The museum is open at weekends, 10am to 2pm on Saturdays and 1pm to 5pm on Sundays. Call 01473 251605 for details.

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