The Duke of Westminster – patron to the Friends of Williamson’s Tunnels (FOWT) – visited the group’s Paddington site on Thursday 2nd June where he saw the progress being made to expose the historic tunnels below the Edge Hill district of the city.
He first visited the tunnels in May 2001 when he became patron to FOWT and we were delighted to welcome him back for a return visit.
The Duke visited the Paddington site and witnessed the progress the FOWT have made during the last three years which has seen volunteers work tirelessly to remove the many years of infill from the deep chambers below ground.
Since we commenced our “Big Dig” in November 2012 we have filled nearly 150 skips, approximately 1,200 tonnes, of mixed infill which has been removed by hand without any mechanical aids. We have recovered several hundred artefacts from the infill including some attractive pieces of pottery and other finds which help to shed more light on what the Victorians valued in that period.
Shortly we will begin excavating and exploring the tunnel complex below Mason Street where Joseph Williamson once lived with his wife Elizabeth.