"Jersey war tunnels" Top 5 Page for this destination War Tunnels - German Underground Hospital Tip by jo104

  Entrance to Underground German hospital
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  • Entrance to Underground German hospital - Jersey
      Entrance to Underground German hospital
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  • German tank - Jersey
      German tank
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  • through the completed tunnel passage - Jersey
      through the completed tunnel passage
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  • many lives lost digging these tunnels - Jersey
      many lives lost digging these tunnels
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This massive network of tunnels was made out of solid rock by using hand tools and gun powder by thousands of forced labourers and Russian prisoners of war. The tunnels were planned for ammunition storage & as a bomb proof barracks for around 12,000 men. The tunnels at meadowridge was to link up with a gun park in the next valley Cap Verd, but with D-Day moving closer & the tunnels still not completed the tunnels was turned into a german hospital receiving casualty station with 5 wards each designed to cope with 100 casualties. Unfinished tunnels were closed off & it was equipped with an operating theatre, recovery room, hospital wards as well as staff quarters. Jersey was never invaded by the allied troops so the tunnel's original purpose was in vain as the surrendered peacefully on 9 May 1945.

The tunnels exhibitions are set out in date order and show what life was like for the Jersey people when they came under control of the Nazi's and the harsh decision as to whether to leave the Island and all your possesions was to be made within 24 hours when Britain announced it would demilitarise the Island on 17 June 1940. Those that did leave were only allowed to take as much as they were able to carry and left for a 15 hour boat trip on cement and coal containers to Britain. The banks ran out of money when people tried to withdraw their savings & were limited to GBP25 each. Out of 23,000 people who registered, half the population, only 6,500 actually left the island & many of those had never seen a black cow. Over that period 6,000 dogs & cats were destroyed by the blue cross. Jersey inhabitants thought the Nazi occupation would only be brief weeks perhaps, nobody could forsee nearly 5 long years.

The displays show how the germans felt they were in a holiday destination being stationed in Jersey & tried to fraternise with the locals. The locals were starving & the Red Cross came to their aid only on 30 December 1944 bringing food parcels on the SS Vega one for every islander. The Nazi's assisted in the distribution but kept nothing for themselves. After the liberation those who profited by Nazi traid were attacked as were so called jerry bags women who had slept with Germans.

The Garden of Reflaction records those who died as a direct consequence of the German occupation.

You are given an identity card of a survivor of the occupation & once you visit the tunnels you are invited to look up that person's background in the cafe.

The entry price is GBP9.85 Adults GBP8.95 Seniors GBP5.75 Children GBP6.75 Students with a id card.

Address: Les Charrieres Malorey, St Lawrence
Directions: red, yellow, blue explorer buses
Phone: 01534 860 808
Website: http://www.jerseywartunnels.com

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Mar 26, 2008
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