About The Western Approaches HQ:
Beneath the streets of Liverpool lies a secret bunker that was instrumental in protecting Britain's shipping during World War 2. Known as the Western Approaches Combined Headquarters, this subterranean command centre helped coordinate the Royal Navy and required official clearance to enter. Today it's open to visitors eager to learn about the role Britain's intelligence forces played in securing an Allied victory during the Battle of the Atlantic.
Descending the stairs of Derby House on Rumford Street, you'll enter into a network of rooms and corridors, preserved just as they were left in 1945. Here intelligence officials worked alongside WRNS and WAAF personnel in plotting manoeuvres and communicating enemy positions to commanders out at sea. Everything was done in absolute secrecy, as evidenced by the secure phones, one of which connected directly to the London War Cabinet.
As you wander through the vast map room, offices and sleeping quarters you'll get an intimate feel for the daily lives of the men and women who worked there. Guests are encouraged to sit at the desks, touch the typewriters and handle the telephones used by the staff. Standard to the visits Western Approaches bunker are self-guided, so you'll be presented with plenty of information plaques throughout the experience.
- All Year Round, Daily.
schedule Opening Hours:
- 10:00 to 17:00 (Last Entry 16:00).
- Western Approaches Museum, The Battle of the Atlantic Experience, 1-3 Rumford Street, Liverpool L2 8SZ.
- Ramp accessible toilets near reception area.
- Room for coffee and tea purchases.
Unfortunately due to Western Approaches' preserved status the only routes in and out of the bunker are via stairs. These are not currently accessible to wheelchair users, and visitors with mobility impairments should take note of them. Some historic rooms on the upper floor are accessible to visitors unable to use the stairs (these guests will not be charged entry).
There are seats throughout the attraction, though small collapsible stools can also be requested at reception.