Underground (Miscellaneous: Tunnels, Roads, Bunkers Etc.)

Tribble

Killjoy Boffin
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Hadn't heard of that one!

There's quite a few tales of musicians being sent down tunnels to track their progress before disappearing.

Richmond Castle to Easby Abbey - Drummer Boy
Edinburgh Castle to Holyrood Palace - Drummer Boy/Lone Piper
Binham Priory, Norfolk - fiddler
Culzean Castle - piper (and his dog)

Seems being a piper or drummer-boy in the old days was a dangerous job - never knew when you might get shoved down a dark tunnel and told to start walking.

Some interesting related links : Ley Tunnels

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tunnels_in_popular_culture#Examples
 

Ladyloafer

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Hadn't heard of that one!

There's quite a few tales of musicians being sent down tunnels to track their progress before disappearing.

Richmond Castle to Easby Abbey - Drummer Boy
Edinburgh Castle to Holyrood Palace - Drummer Boy/Lone Piper
Binham Priory, Norfolk - fiddler
Culzean Castle - piper (and his dog)

Seems being a piper or drummer-boy in the old days was a dangerous job - never knew when you might get shoved down a dark tunnel and told to start walking.

Some interesting related links : Ley Tunnels

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tunnels_in_popular_culture#Examples
A clever drummer would just fake it. Get just out of sight then drum quieter and quieter. Pop back up ten minutes later saying he has no memory of what happened!
 

Ladyloafer

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Any stories of sending drummer boys or pipers down a tunnel to track the route and the music suddenly stops?

If a city is old enough, it likely will have lots of tunnels. In the case of Edinburgh (see above link), new was built on top of old, layer on layer, entire streets getting buried as the city grew up and sideways. Sometimes the empty spaces would become cellars, sometimes they'd be forgotten about and rediscovered decades or even centuries later and turned into ghost walks. Some cities have Roman sewers. Paris is built over an estimated 200 miles of limestone quarry mines (some of which became the famous Catacombs).

As for your tunnel to the town hall... what was the site's purpose in the Civil War era? Perhaps it was a central building that was later chosen as an ideal site for the town hall?

P.S. I've heard that the cellars and tunnels under Edinburgh Castle go down a LOT further than the tourists get to learn about. That's somewhere I'd love to explore.
well still not found any references to tunnels.

I did find an illustration of where the old castle would've been in relation to current buildings. the town hall is in the market place outside of what would've been the southern wall. plus

Leland tells us that there were five bargates and three crosses in the town, and he also says that most of the roads were in a very poor condition, full of ruts and very dirty. However, the Cuttle Brook*, which was a stream which ran down into the Market Place, was kept clean and no-one was allowed to let geese or ducks swim in it.

... was famous for its market in Tudor times, [and the main trades were]
Leatherworking 34%
Suppliers of food and drink 26%
Cloth Trade 16%
Wood Working 9%
Metal working 8%
Building Trades 3%​
none of which really cries much of secret tunnels. though of course they probably would come later. the search continues...


*i have never ever heard of cuttle brook.
 

Tribble

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well still not found any references to tunnels.

I did find an illustration of where the old castle would've been in relation to current buildings. the town hall is in the market place outside of what would've been the southern wall. plus
Doing a quick overlay of that 1800s map and current map, it appears the town hall is built on the site of an old school and a "Pump Pound". Only unlikely thing I can think of is that the Pump Pound was connected to a navigable water source like an underground river/stream/tunnel linked to the Cherwell. But as you observed, it's outside the city walls - rather useless as an ammo supply route if the castle's under siege (especially as it's next to a barbican - the entrances are going to be under constant watch.)

It could be the commenter is thinking of the WW2 air raid shelter under the Town Hall. It apparently had a capacity of 250.

https://www.banburyguardian.co.uk/lifestyle/nostalgia/war-children-had-to-hide-under-pews-1-598249

Have you tried asking at the town hall itself, or the local library? Maybe the shelters still exist, perhaps converted into storerooms. (Libraries often have old maps and clippings not online and librarians know everything)


 

Tribble

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Just off to the left, not on the map...gropecunt lane. :0
Parsons Street in Banbury was first recorded as Gropecunt Lane in 1333, and may have been an important thoroughfare, but by 1410 its name had been changed to Parsons Lane

Do locals still refer to it by its former epithetical name? Is the trade still plied there?

And just noticed your comment about Cuttle Brook - could be that the Pump Pound (also in Market Place) was a water pump that tapped into the now-underground brook?

Edit : Looks like your Cuttle Brook fed into a cucking-pool!

Also mentioned here : https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/oxon/vol10/pp18-28
 
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maximus otter

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In Lancaster we used to have Swapcunt Alley until it was renamed Bashful Alley. Because well to do visitors would have a knee trembler down the alley without getting caught.
Why would “well to do” people need to have a “knee-trembler up an alley”? That’s for shop stewards and works conveners. The affluent would be drinking Roederer Cristal out of the navels of supermodels, like any rational human being.

maximus otter
 

Spudrick68

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The rationale as I understand is that they would avoid the social shame of what they were doing as visitors hoping not to get caught. This is what I have read in a couple of local books anyhow. I'm no history expert. And we are also talking of over a century ago.
 

Ladyloafer

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Parsons Street in Banbury was first recorded as Gropecunt Lane in 1333, and may have been an important thoroughfare, but by 1410 its name had been changed to Parsons Lane

Do locals still refer to it by its former epithetical name? Is the trade still plied there?

And just noticed your comment about Cuttle Brook - could be that the Pump Pound (also in Market Place) was a water pump that tapped into the now-underground brook?

Edit : Looks like your Cuttle Brook fed into a cucking-pool!

Also mentioned here : https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/oxon/vol10/pp18-28
I don't think its historical name is terribly well known to the masses tbh. In a local history book i there was an undated medieval map calling the road personnes street. Maybe it was never officially known by its common name?

these days the area fancies itself as the 'nice' part of the town centre, though theres a few pubs, so who knows, after a few gin-cocktails up against the pasty shop? each to their own...
 

Tribble

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Popular porn star, Jenni Lee, found living in the famous Las Vegas underground city. (NSFW, lots of semi-nekkid pics, hey it's the Star what do you expect?)

https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/world-news/world-famous-porn-star-found-18965788

For 75 years the French Senate - the upper house of parliament based in the historic Luxembourg Palace - has been keeping an embarrassing secret.
Hidden in the basement, its whereabouts privy to just a handful of initiates, lies a bust of Adolf Hitler.
This week the bust's existence was revealed thanks to an investigation by Le Monde newspaper. It also found a 3m x 2m (10ft x 6.5ft) Nazi flag, and various other documents and items from the Occupation.


https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-49592034
 

escargot

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This is fascinating. Apparently the Welsh town of Wrexham has mysterious underground tunnels, and someone called Wayne says he's investigated and mapped them.

The page here is the North Wales Live website, a respectable news source. Not a crank site.
There are several explanatory maps and lots of tasty links to explore. Almost like being there!

Man who says he investigated Wrexham's underground tunnels draws map of where hidden network lies

A man who investigated Wrexham's mysterious underground tunnels has drawn up a map of where he understands the hidden network runs.

Wayne, 33, who did not want to reveal his full name, carried out his own investigation work under the town's streets around a decade ago after hearing of their alleged existence.

Despite having "turned Wrexham library upside down" looking for official documents and evidence, he came to a dead end.

Not giving up, and with a growing curiosity, he sought to find his own by speaking to locals and getting permission from a number of the town's shops and pubs to explore their basements himself.

What he claims to have discovered was a "jungle" of arched tunnels beneath the town.
etc
 

RaM

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A friend of mine was a surveyor for one of the NW Boroughs and one of his jobs
was to walk the underground tunnels often with streams or rivers running through
them to inspect them for cracks faults and so on, he would go down at one place
and emerge often miles away.
Another friend was a water man for one of the mills in Bury, he could wander all
over the town underground, I had a few walks down there but how I coveted that
job.
 

Bigphoot2

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Underground fuel depot from WW2 in Scotland.

Exploring The Tunnel: Scotland's secret WW2 fuel depot
By Mary McCoolBBC Scotland news
  • 23 September 2019
Beneath the hills of the Scottish Highlands lies one of the largest underground structures ever built by man.
Across Easter Ross it is known simply as The Tunnel.
Built between 1938 and 1941 for use during World War Two, the Inchindown oil storage facility is comprised of six monstrous tanks - 778ft (237m) long, 30ft (9m) wide and 44ft (13m) high.
The now-empty tanks are accessible by two tunnels - providing you can stomach the stench of oil vapour while navigating your way through complete darkness.
etc
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-49728273
 

RaM

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Isn't that were some guy goes to play a instrument as the acoustics are so pure?
 

escargot

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A friend of mine was a surveyor for one of the NW Boroughs and one of his jobs
was to walk the underground tunnels often with streams or rivers running through
them to inspect them for cracks faults and so on, he would go down at one place
and emerge often miles away.
Heh, this reminds me of the Robert Harris novel Pompeii wherein a character's intimate acquaintance with the underground irrigation system comes in VERY handy when the volcano goes off.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Cochise

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This is fascinating. Apparently the Welsh town of Wrexham has mysterious underground tunnels, and someone called Wayne says he's investigated and mapped them.

The page here is the North Wales Live website, a respectable news source. Not a crank site.
There are several explanatory maps and lots of tasty links to explore. Almost like being there!

Man who says he investigated Wrexham's underground tunnels draws map of where hidden network lies
There are allegedly underground tunnels in Caernarfon as well. I haven't seen them, but a deceased friend of mine who used to work on the local newspaper said she had been down some of them. This is apart from the stream that runs under the town in a tunnel and the old railway tunnel now converted to road use.
 

escargot

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There are allegedly underground tunnels in Caernarfon as well. I haven't seen them, but a deceased friend of mine who used to work on the local newspaper said she had been down some of them. This is apart from the stream that runs under the town in a tunnel and the old railway tunnel now converted to road use.
An old railway line along there from Bangor was converted into a brilliant cycle path, wonder if we used the former railway tunnel? I'll investigate.

Caernarfon is generally fantastic. I recommend it to anyone who likes castles, history, beer, trains, cycling, hiking, restaurants, the seas, landscapes, boats, everything Wales does best.

Used to visit with the family as a child. Hadn't been back for years since, went for a bike ride with Techy, was not disappointed.
 
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The story of the girl who got lost and died in the Odessa catacombs did the rounds on Quora earlier today.
The catacombs are an astonishing five times more extensive than the far more famous Parisian catacombs and have accumulated their own legends of partying youngsters, extreme thrill-seekers, occultists etc.
A good analysis of the allegedly dead girl "Masha" here:

https://www.vice.com/en_uk/article/7bd7ab/dying-in-ukraines-endless-labyrinth-of-catacombs-341
Video here of the official guided tour of the Odessa catacombs.
You get to visit around 2km out of the estimated 2,500km of tunnels. The tour focuses primarily on the Soviet-era barricaded areas. One Fortean element though was the area where soldiers could not remain for longer than one hour, because they started to hallucinate.

 
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