His day couldn’t get any worse, or so he thought, but apparently, it could. Due to the noises he heard the previous night, and he could not get a good night’s rest. Then this guy put his knees on the driveway so he could see what was under the car. A sickening sound shocked him as he was taking a better look at the concrete. But what was going on on earth beneath the driveway? He had no idea when he bought and moved into his new house that he was going to find something like this!
His New Home
When you buy a new house, it is impossible to know exactly what you will get. However, after finding a house in Luton for such a great price, Simon Marks could not help himself. The 37-year-old guy took care of the paperwork and immediately transferred the payment. He did not even question at the time why the owner was trying so hurriedly to get rid of the property.
It Was His First Night
Simon began to unpack his boxes a couple of months after this. He was thrilled to spend the first night at his new home. He went to bed tired after spending the weekend transporting his stuff to the new place. He was happy to set the alarm for 8 in the morning after considering the distance between the house and the office. However, as he was lying in the dark, he then heard a weird noise.
Time To Investigate
He held his breath to allow him to listen more properly. The sound came again, and he could tell that it was coming from outside the house. The noise was mute and dull, sounding like metal gravel. This disturbance intrigued him, so he stood up and looked out at the garden window. He could not see anything moving. Once again, everything was silent, so he shrugged and went back to bed.
Discovery In The Driveway
He put his Vauxhall Zafira in reverse the following morning. To his surprise, the car did not back out of the driveway and instead lurched forward! He went to class and tried it again. It looked like the wheel got caught on something, however. Until his vehicle jumped backward and sighed in relief, he revived the engine. He went out after this to take a look at what had blocked the front wheel.
The Driveway Gave
To get a better look at it, Simon knelt. This was when he noticed that he had cracked the driveway pavers. Not only that, but right before him, the driveway started giving in! As the concrete came apart and crumbled into the earth, he jumped back upon hearing the snap. It was only when the dust began to settle that he saw a very unnerving sight. What was going on in this place?
It Should Not Be There
The elderly couple who lived there built the house in the ’70s, as far as he knew. This, though, was clearly not part of the house’s plans! After being confident, he went down on his stomach and rested his height on the pavers, and began to crawl forward. He saw something in the earth that made him fetch a trowel and start digging. What did he go and find down there?
Beneath The Ground
He soon broke into the dirt. A piece of soil-protruding metal was revealed! To get rid of the dirt, he used his hands to hold the object. After that, he pulled it with all he had. However, irrespective of how much strength, the rusty thing would not budge. Then he dug around it until he could free it. He realized this piece of metal was attached to a larger object as he saw more and more. What could this possibly be?
What Was Hidden There
His mind began to race with images of the sinkhole swallowing up his car as the hole got bigger. Even worse, what if the whole house were to sink into this weird void? He saw what looked like a human-made object below everything after working some more on the hole. This was when he realized it was even more sinister than he thought things were. He grabbed his phone and asked for help.
They Saw An Old Ladder
His father, Gerald, ran to the scene. They worked on the hole without any equipment or professional tools. They carefully destroyed the cracked concrete surrounding the metal piece and discovered a rectangular hole there. They saw a rusty ladder descending into darkness! They made them feel uncomfortable. What was the secret passage under the driveway? Where it went, they wondered. They had only one way in the end, to get the answers to their questions.
They Went Even Deeper
Before he bought the old house, Simon made sure to do his homework. It was his obligation, of course, to figure out what he was about to get into. He knew that surveys of the ordinances would not help solve the mystery of this hidden tunnel. Before the construction of the house, the records said that it was all empty land. As the pair began digging deep, a shiver went down his spine.
The mud was so densely packed that the two of them had to dump the dirt in buckets. The pile of dirt just kept getting bigger and bigger as the hours passed by. In the end, approximately five feet of soil could be excavated, which gave them enough space to use the latter. The time had come to investigate! But what did they find down there?
It Had Hidden Rooms
Simon began to make his way down the tunnel, and once he was halfway through, he felt strange. He did not want any further exploration. It might not be safe, after all! He went back to the house to get the selfie stick. He went down the hole after attaching his telephone to it. On the phone screen, he saw that the underground tunnel had two rooms. Gerald had a theory about what they were looking at, but first, it was important to confirm it.
The Secret Beneath The House
For the solid price of half a million bucks, Simon bought this property. However, it turned out that before the house stood there, the land had been in use for a different purpose. Although the older man he bought was the house’s original owner, he did not tell Simon of the secret lies beneath the house. Actually, the sound he heard the night before was the soil giving way beneath the cement as it fell into the hidden room.
A Strategic Location
While doing some research on the property, Simon and his dad chose to stop digging. The plot number was checked, which helped them understand what was happening more quickly. The plot of land was empty before the elderly couple. But Gerald pointed out that it was located in the town’s fairly strategic area. However, in the end, what gave them an idea was the time when the house was built.
Doing Their Research
Simon explained, “My dad saw it and instantly said it’s an air raid shelter,” he continued, “We googled it and found there are quite a few in this area.” They carried out more research, and he discovered that it was a shelter built during the Second World War. He told reporters, “The previous owner must have known it was there, and when he built the house and put a garden in… he must have filled it in.”
A Man Called Sir John Anderson
In 1938, at the beginning of the Second World War, a man named Sir John Anderson was given the task of preparing people for war. Remember, this wasn’t an easy thing to do. It was his duty to devise a strategy that would protect Britain’s citizens from the bombings and attacks that were certain to come. That’s why he drew up a plan to ensure that it would be safe for civilians.
Building Backyard Shelters
Together with a group of engineers, Sir John Anderson planned and assisted people with creating simple backyard underground shelters. It was important for these bunkers to stay close to the house to retreat at any given moment. The structure’s walls were made of a flexible yet lightweight metal that was better than concrete. Overall, more than two million such bomb shelters have been built across the country. This was not what Simon discovered, though!
The Design Was Different
By looking at the chamber, Gerald was able to say that it was not a bomb shelter designed by Sir John Anderson. It was true, however, that the structure was built around 1938. It was pretty close to the bombing that took place near Luton. After learning that the small town had become a target, the people living in the area were scared. Many of them wanted to make sure they would be safe no matter what.
A Better Structure
The community got together and made a plan to create a shelter for the community. The residents of the area wanted to make sure they could have something that would withstand air raids. Gerald knew that because it came with two rooms, it was not the typical Anderson-style bunker. It used concrete and bricks on top of that. They also found several artifacts as Gerald and Simon dug deeper!
In one of the rooms in the tunnel, the duo discovered a newspaper clip. During the Second World War, the Herald newspaper was published. One of the headlines stated, “Luton Airport is this the end?” On the other hand, in the middle of the war, the articles discussed everyday life. The artifact provided them with the opportunity to look at what it was like during the war to live in Britain. What else did they come across down there?
It Was Made By Hand
The pair also stumbled into evidence that there was a lot of water and food stored down there before. People needed sustenance if, after all, they were to hide under the ground. They might have been holed up in shelters for days or even weeks on end. When Simon was interviewed, he said, “It’s incredible to think it has all been made by hand.”
The Materials Used
In the underground shelter, concrete walls were reinforced with brick and mortar. This gave it a buffer to protect from air travel. Although Gerald and Simon had already discovered an amazing discovery, it wasn’t yet the end. “It’s been a case of the dig, dig, dig. We’re about five feet down at the moment, so it’s just another five feet to go until it’s finished. I think we’re going to have to get a skip in because there’s so much rubbish to get rid of,” explained Simon. In the shelter, however, they soon made another amazing find!
That Was Not All
“One of the walls has been bricked up. I’m 90 percent sure we won’t find any more rooms, but we don’t know. They might have bricked up one of the walls when the house was built to make way for the foundations,” he informed the reporters. He said, “If that’s the case, we’ll just have to leave it.” This amazing story made some rounds on the internet after a while!
The Arrival Of Reporters
Neighbors and news reporters flocked to the front driveway when Simon and Gerald kept digging in the area. They all wanted to see an incredible discovery. However, after finding something so important in his own home, Simon didn’t really care about the attention he was getting. No, he was more concerned about something different. Mind you, and he didn’t spend that much time just digging for fame!
An Incredible Part Of History
Simon believed that knowing about the shelter was important for everyone. He did not do it for fame, however. He just felt like it was his duty to shed some light on the country’s history. If this part of history were forgotten, it would have been a shame. He wanted the air-raid shelter to be maintained for generations to come. But what exactly is his plan to clear up the shelter once they’re done?
It Will Not Be Forgotten
Now Simon and Gerald are planning on working on and preserving it. They also hope that it will be declared a historic and significant monument. The duo believes we should never forget about this because the war has been going on for decades. They hope that future generations will be able to go to the shelter and learn more about this important time in Britain’s history.