VIDEO: Man unearths 'hidden' air raid shelter under patio

SURPRISE FIND: Steve Saywell with the WW2 air raid shelter that he has uncovered in the back garden of  his Ensbury Park home

SURPRISE FIND: Steve Saywell with the WW2 air raid shelter that he has uncovered in the back garden of his Ensbury Park home

First published in News
Last updated

A BOURNEMOUTH man who started laying a new patio was fascinated to discover a concrete air raid shelter buried underneath his back garden.

When Steve Saywell started ripping up some ageing decking at his Ensbury Park home, he thought it would be a relatively straightforward bank holiday weekend job.

However, that all changed with the discovery of the small concrete bunker.

“It’s not every day you find a bomb shelter buried under your garden,” said the 36-year-old painter and decorator. “To be honest we’re not too sure what to do with it now.”

Steve and pal Adrian Phillips started work on what was going to be new garden patio on Saturday.

“We started to take the decking up to put some new paving slabs down, and then we found this big concrete arch.

“Didn’t think too much of it at the time, until we started taking the back part up and this is when we found the hole with the ladder leading down.”

Steve, who has lived at the property with his wife for seven years, had no idea the concrete bunker was under his garden.

However, his neighbours were able to shed some light on his find.

“One neighbour told us she used to play in it in the late 1960s and early ’70s when she was a young girl,” said Steve. “They used it as a play den and it must have been covered up sometime after that.

“We’re pretty sure it is a World War II air raid shelter, it is about 8ft by 5ft and 10ft deep.”

Once the rubble has been removed Steve says he’d love to get inside to see what it’s like. “Who knows?” he joked. “It could become our new wine cellar.”

He added: “To come across this in your garden is quite interesting but it’s going to cost hundreds and hundreds of pounds if we decide to fill it in.”

Comments (21)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:35am Tue 6 May 14

Lord Spring says...

Have a word with a chap from Barnsley he will tell you what to do with it , Grow early rhubarb , then have a word with the council on how to grow mushroom they are experts on that
Have a word with a chap from Barnsley he will tell you what to do with it , Grow early rhubarb , then have a word with the council on how to grow mushroom they are experts on that Lord Spring
  • Score: 13

7:38am Tue 6 May 14

Huey says...

Great story, interesting.
Great story, interesting. Huey
  • Score: 20

7:54am Tue 6 May 14

Marty Caine UKIP says...

Turn it into a bar :)
Turn it into a bar :) Marty Caine UKIP
  • Score: 9

7:58am Tue 6 May 14

High Treason says...

Use it for housing, should be able to fit a few in there just as they do in the back gardens in London.
Use it for housing, should be able to fit a few in there just as they do in the back gardens in London. High Treason
  • Score: 17

8:21am Tue 6 May 14

twynham says...

Dave Wells shown any interest?
Dave Wells shown any interest? twynham
  • Score: 45

8:26am Tue 6 May 14

whataboutthat says...

Hot tub/jacuzzi
Hot tub/jacuzzi whataboutthat
  • Score: 11

8:31am Tue 6 May 14

nickynoodah says...

don't tell nobath he likes living under rocks
providing it as not got any washing facilities of course

you know
don't tell nobath he likes living under rocks providing it as not got any washing facilities of course you know nickynoodah
  • Score: -11

9:26am Tue 6 May 14

nosuchluck54 says...

Make a good HQ for the UKIP me thinks :)
Make a good HQ for the UKIP me thinks :) nosuchluck54
  • Score: -8

9:27am Tue 6 May 14

littlevoice234 says...

Nice little find! Don't fill it!
Nice little find! Don't fill it! littlevoice234
  • Score: 20

10:21am Tue 6 May 14

nothingtofear says...

Interesting story and good to see someone who hasn't gone moaning to the council expecting them to do something about it.
Interesting story and good to see someone who hasn't gone moaning to the council expecting them to do something about it. nothingtofear
  • Score: 24

12:02pm Tue 6 May 14

big_afcb_fan says...

nice little troll cave for dorsetkn0b
nice little troll cave for dorsetkn0b big_afcb_fan
  • Score: 0

12:04pm Tue 6 May 14

Sir Beachy Head says...

Keep it ready for when we will be at war with Russia. Should be about 4 years so plenty of time to stock up with tins.
Keep it ready for when we will be at war with Russia. Should be about 4 years so plenty of time to stock up with tins. Sir Beachy Head
  • Score: -3

2:19pm Tue 6 May 14

Harrytherspider says...

good job your not on benefits as the local council would have hit you with bedroom tax :-)
good job your not on benefits as the local council would have hit you with bedroom tax :-) Harrytherspider
  • Score: 19

3:51pm Tue 6 May 14

Letcommonsenseprevail says...

Would make a great bar!! Occasional license - away you go!!
Would make a great bar!! Occasional license - away you go!! Letcommonsenseprevail
  • Score: 1

5:36pm Tue 6 May 14

chris77 says...

What where the odds of that Steve
What where the odds of that Steve chris77
  • Score: -5

6:19pm Tue 6 May 14

SympatheticSam says...

chris77 wrote:
What where the odds of that Steve
Where is what, Chris?
[quote][p][bold]chris77[/bold] wrote: What where the odds of that Steve[/p][/quote]Where is what, Chris? SympatheticSam
  • Score: -3

8:09pm Tue 6 May 14

Alantrom says...

Very interesting, a bit of history. I wonder how many of these remain around the town? There was one similar to this at my previous home in Wallisdown except there was no ladder but a set of concrete stairs leading down and then turning into the room below. i used it for a bit of extra storage but eventually the foxes moved in.
Very interesting, a bit of history. I wonder how many of these remain around the town? There was one similar to this at my previous home in Wallisdown except there was no ladder but a set of concrete stairs leading down and then turning into the room below. i used it for a bit of extra storage but eventually the foxes moved in. Alantrom
  • Score: 7

10:21pm Tue 6 May 14

Not A Local says...

Why would you fill it in? It's part of this countries history, something which is quickly disappearing! Preserve the shelter underground as a piece of living history, and make a garden feature out of the entrance.
Why would you fill it in? It's part of this countries history, something which is quickly disappearing! Preserve the shelter underground as a piece of living history, and make a garden feature out of the entrance. Not A Local
  • Score: 9

4:18pm Wed 7 May 14

60plus says...

I use to play in ours as a child my dad dug it out at the start of the war,I even had friends sleep in it warmer than the house.
I use to play in ours as a child my dad dug it out at the start of the war,I even had friends sleep in it warmer than the house. 60plus
  • Score: 2

5:34pm Wed 7 May 14

Paul Weaver says...

Letcommonsenseprevai
l
wrote:
Would make a great bar!! Occasional license - away you go!!
Nice idea but you wouldn't get past the elf and safety.
[quote][p][bold]Letcommonsenseprevai l[/bold] wrote: Would make a great bar!! Occasional license - away you go!![/p][/quote]Nice idea but you wouldn't get past the elf and safety. Paul Weaver
  • Score: 0

4:16pm Thu 8 May 14

MCAME1989 says...

They have these in most garden in London!!
They have these in most garden in London!! MCAME1989
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree