Report - - RAF CHILMARK ammunition store and underground, wiltshire sept 2010 | Underground Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - RAF CHILMARK ammunition store and underground, wiltshire sept 2010


shire lad born & breeding
Regular User
well this was one that started as a chat in a pub last year, having read alot about the underground store and seeing the pics we started asking questions only to be told, there are workings but nothing much really, no one really knew its location and not having much time to go and have a look we just brused it under the carpet, that was until a couple of reports started to surface

top shout to kinger :mrgreen:

so me, vwdirtboy and toad made our plans and headed over to the other side of wiltshire, we meet and made our way to the site, only to drive past a strang looking fella looking dodgy near the entrance, camera and tripod in hand,a bit early to be dogging i thought ah he must be exploring, then as he turned round with a big grin on his face, relief was in there air for both of us as it was darkprince having a mouch about lol, having seen his comments on this palce already i had a feeling he might be out this way soon

so we parked the cars up and head back to meet up with him, had a chat and made our way in, we did the site backwards to my report but i want to try and discribe the route of how the site would of worked so here we go


RAF Chilmark
Chilmark Quarries and its underground limestone mines and the surrounding land were acquired by the Air Ministry in 1936 and served as a bomb store, RAF Chilmark, throughout WW2.

Close to the village of Chilmark the huge quarry workings had been supplied the stone for the building of Salisbury Cathedral.There was a standard-gauge transfer station at Ham Cross, with afour mile spur from Chilmark to the BR connection at Dinton which utilises part of the old double track main line from Exeter to Salisbury.

Much of the underground railway, within the individual bomb stores was operated by battery electric locos, one of which was Baguley Drewery 3703, now preserved on the Golden Valley Railway in Derbyshire - link.

The above ground system also served the Chilmark Stone Mine that was located within RAF Chilmark.

The first consignment of war stores arrived in May 1937, unlike most other WW2 RAF depots, Chilmark continued in use after the war but by 1965 chilmark was the RAF's only ammunition supply depot and In 1994 supplies were transferred to the Nato depot at Glen Douglas in Scotland, prior to the complete closure of Chilmark in April 1995 with the loss of 200 jobs

RAF Chilmark was finally decommissioned in 1996 and most of the remaining 2ft gauge railway equipment disposed of in a MOD tender

quote from the RAF museam
for 58 years past generations of RAF,RN, army and american staff have been making, maintaing or disposing of explosives, including mustard gas at chilmark and what contamination might exist on its 343 acre site is any ones guess
there where many anecdotal stories of past dumping activites but apart from one known burial pit for mustard gas containers there was precious little on record, we and our HQ team knew that this time we had to do our best to clear up the results of any previous burial or dumping of explosives at chilmark. the unit had to be thoroughly searched and cleared and an EOD team, lead by RAF EOD specialist, but staffed by EOD trained chilmark civilian armaments staff was formed to carry out the task

. -
Ruston & Hornsby 40DL diesel-mechanical 3-speed 0-4-0, works number 194771 (built in Lincoln) was part of a batch of small diesel locomotives built under contract for theAir Ministry in 1939. this has been restored now but was once used at chilmark during the war


as was this Jack is an ex-RAF Chilmark loco