History Snap: Underground Operating Theatre, Dover

It’s well known that the tunnels beneath Dover Castle were the military headquarters during World War II but did you know that a hospital was also concealed there?

Between 1941 and 1942, an annexe level of tunnels was created to house a hospital and provide refuge for civilians who may need shelter. *The first documented staff to man the Medical Dressing Station were the 52nd Field Dressing Unit RAMAC who were stationed there, under Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Edgar Walsh, between June and November 1943. Emergency treatment was given to pilots rescued from the channel, as well as military and civilian casualties, before they were transferred inland for recuperation.

Due to its proximity to the French coastline, Dover suffered heavy shelling from the German guns stationed there and the busiest time for the hospital was between late 1943 and mid-1944, when this was combined with a continuous air onslaught…

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