Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

One of the nation’s most unusual fair venues is the network of underground tunnels on the Marina Esplanade in Ramsgate.

The brainchild of Ramsgate’s ‘top hat’ mayor – the splendidly named Arthur Bloomfield Courtenay Kempe – these huge air raid shelters were built in a matter of months at the outbreak of the Second World War using a disused railway tunnel.

When the east Kent town was hit by a wave of air raids in 1940 and 1941, 60,000 people decamped for months at a time to the underground metropolis.

There was a barber’s shop, a hospital, a canteen, a greengrocer – and a full orchestra for entertainment.

A subterranean vintage and collectors’ fair at the venue on Sunday, March 25, is a first for the organisers, who currently run guided tours in the tunnels. They are hoping for 25-plus dealers selling militaria and other vintage and wartime memorabilia.

A successful fair could see it become a regular occurrence. For more information on the fair ring David Batten on 07973 469411.