Make Do Monday – Anderson Shelters

The Anderson shelter is one of the most recognisable reminders of the Blitz. Around one and a half million shelters were distributed between February 1938 and the outbreak of the war. Over 2.1 million were raised during the war.

Designed in 1938 by William Paterson and Oscar Carl Kerrison in a response to a request from the home office to develop a shelter for air-raids. Sir John Anderson who set the task was convinced that the problem of providing air-raid shelter for the civil population could never be fully solved without finding some way of bringing the shelter to the people, instead of trying to bring all the people to communal shelter. The Anderson shelters were built around homes for up to six people per shelter and could protect against blasts and ground shocks.

Here is a video showing how a well constructed shelter could save lives:

After the war many Anderson shelters found a new use as garden sheds.

Long time supporters of the Show, the Invicta Military vehicle Preservation Society (IMPS) salvaged the remains of three Anderson shelters and one caravan chassis, combining all of them into a mobile display. Here it is in the Victory Gardena the show.


Volunteers of the show, Dave and Lindsay, restored an Anderson shelter for their back garden and it took pride of place outside the Victory marquee at the Dig for Victory Show!


Sources: Air-raid shelter, prototype, Gordano Homefront.


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