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TRAVEL TRIPS UK2

TRAVEL TRIPS

GREG BARNES' U.K. trip (Part 2 OF 4)– September 2019
posted Nov 24

“I focused on the War Rooms, but you should know there is the large and terrific Churchill Museum that is part of the underground labyrinth.  Here is a blatant tease. You will love Album 3.  Romans, Vikings, and chocolate are a medieval recipe too hard to resist.  So, I take a northeast train for a thirty-six hour visit to York.”

                                                                      Churchill War Rooms

“The underground labyrinth of offices and living quarters was the operational centre for The UK military, Prime Minister Churchill & his Cabinet. The Cabinet retreated to the rooms during air raids. The military staffed it full-time and tracked the war from the Map Room. Closed in 1945, the rooms were refurbished and opened to the public in 1984. In 2005, a large Churchill museum was added devoted to his life in words and pictures.”

  1. Chrurchill's ability to lead and the inspiration he provided to the country is well known. As this comment suggests, he wasn't an easy guy to like.
  2. Churchill & the wartime leadership of the various military branches.
  3. The entrance to the War Rooms and the attached Churchill Museum. As a person 60+ admission was Pounds 17.60.
  4. The War Rooms are under the beautiful Justice Building, right across from St. James Park. The only bomb that hit near the complex was in 1940 and landed on the plaza of 10 Downing Street a short walk away. It only resulted in a little crater. However, Officials madly added reinforcing in the form of timbers and in 1940 started a concrete slab to increase survivability of The War Rooms. The Slab (5 feet thick) was progressively extended and by spring 1941 the increased protection had enabled the Cabinet War Rooms to expand to three times their original size.
  5. Great story about the door. One can marvel at the historical figures that passed throught it and the decisions made behind it.
  6. Darn good shape for its age.
  7. Nice guy, but a bit wooden.
  8. The Cabinet Meeting Room. Churchill's spot was at under the map where the red case sat. The red cases are still used by Government Ministers every day to hold important policy papers or documents to be signed.
  9. Churchill so hated noise that noiseless typewriters had to be imported from Remington in the United States. He particularly hated whistling. Signs were posted in strategic spots warning against the practice.
  10. While the usage of many of the War Rooms individual spaces changed over the course of the war, the facility included dormitories for staff, private bedrooms for military officers and senior ministers, and rooms for typists or telephone switchboard operators.
  11. Tough mole-like existence and spartan dorm-like facilities. Sort of like my hotel room in London.
  12. Churchill's family were often there. His daughters' room.
  13. This served the PM. There were other larger cooking and eating rooms for staff and military. At any one time there could be over 500 people working there. The facility covers 45 acres underground. Enough for a small sheep farm..yes?
  14. Reminds me of CBC studios in the nuclear bunkers built in each Province. I decommissioned the studio in the Nanaimo bunker in the early 80's. The air filtration was so good there was no dust on anything after 40 years. The studio was complete with turntables and tape machines. Museum quality as they had never been used.
  15. Must have been Churchill's personal switchboard because the telecommunications for the military filled a large room. Notice the ever present gas mask.
  16. Typical working office for a branch of the military machine.
  17. That is why it is called the Map Room. Every element of the war was tracked, including domestic production of aircraft, loses etc.
  18. All branch operations fuctioned in the facility. Imagine the noise with those phones going off all the time.
  19. Great story of about these sugar cubes. They were found in the 80's in the former desk of Commander John Heagerty hidden away at the back of a drawer in the central Map Room. Sugar was in short supply during the war and his wife had given him her daily ration. He so wanted to "ration the ration" that one cube is shaved a bit to indicate how sparingly he would use it for his tea.
  20. Secrecy was critical. "Loose lips sink Ships". Communication between Churchill and other world leaders was encoded and private. He would have such conversations in this tiny room that was labelled Prime Minissters Toilet. Deception amongst even friends.
  21. An exact relica of the clocks that hung in the Map Room. Guess who it belongs to. ME!
  22. Communications Room often used for monitoring intercepts as well as sending messages.
  23. Less spartan was the Prime Ministers bedroom.

Greg Barnes was with CBC Radio for over 29 years. His career in Edmonton and Vancouver encompassed a variety of technical, current affairs production and management roles. When he left CBC in 1995 he was Manager Of BC Region Radio Production. In the last couple of years prior to his leaving, Greg was Regional Radio representative on the small committee that the English services created to restructure the workforce. "Opportunity For Change" was a major initiative that resulted in new ways employees did their work by getting rid of many silos and broadening job descriptions. Within a year after him leaving, the CBC and the Unions negotiated many of the changes proposed in that document. In 1996 Greg went to work for International Forest Products running a major training project for millworkers. He was also hired to be Human Resources Manager of five cedar mills. He later joined the District of West Vancouver as Deputy Director of HR and Labour Relations. He achieved his goal to retire early in 2006. In addition to motorcycling, skiing and travel, he just concluded a 28 year high school football officiating career. He also combined that with 15 years working for the CFL at BC Lions games. He and Colette live in Coquitlam and are the parents of 3 adult children and blessed with 3 grandchildren.

1. Posters & quote

1. Posters & quote

2 Wartime leadership in Britain

2 Wartime leadership in Britain

3. Entrance to the war rooms

3. Entrance to the war rooms


4. Street above war rooms

4. Street above war rooms

5. Story of the doors

5. Story of the doors

6. Darn good shape for it's age

6. Darn good shape for it's age


7. Military mannekin

7. Military mannekin

8. The cabinet meeting room

8. The cabinet meeting room

9. Noisless typwriter

9. Noisless typwriter


10. Staff quarters

10. Staff quarters

11. Spartan facilities

11. Spartan facilities

12. Churchhill's daughter's room

12. Churchhill's daughter's room


13. Kitchen serving the PM

13. Kitchen serving the PM

14. Broadcast equipment room

14. Broadcast equipment room

15. Churchil's personal switchboard

15. Churchil's personal switchboard


16. Working office for a branch of the military machine

16. Working office for a branch of the military machine

17. Map room

17. Map room

18. All branch operations

18. All branch operations


19. Sugar cubes

19. Sugar cubes

20. Phone room labelled PM toilet

20. Phone room labelled PM toilet

21. Replica of a map room clock

21. Replica of a map room clock


22. Communications room

22. Communications room

23. PM bedroom

23. PM bedroom