Anderson Shelter in Inglemere Road, Mitcham

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Date Photo Taken 1st January 0001
Area Mitcham
Copyright 1 Mitcham Public Library
Picture Reference Mit_​War_​2-4a
Original Format Photo
Notes / History When Inglemere Road was hit by a High Explosive Bomb many local residents were saved by their Anderson Shelters.

Anderson Shelters were named after Sir John Anderson who was put in charge of Air Raid Precautions in November 1938. He immediately commissioned the engineer, William Patterson, to design a small and cheap shelter that could be erected in people's gardens. The first 'Anderson' shelter was erected in a garden in Islington, London on 25 February 1939 and around 1.5 million were soon distributed to people living in areas expected to be bombed by the Luftwaffe.

Made from galvanised corrugated steel, and sunk into the ground, each shelter kit came with detailed instructions. The shelters were held together with bolts and every kit was provided with a spanner-tommy bar. After construction, the spanner was kept in the shelter as it might be needed to loosen the clip bolts at the back of the shelter, and so create an emergency exit if the main door was blocked by bomb debris.

It was vitally important that Anderson air raid shelters were correctly installed with a thick layer of earth covering the metal structure.

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