Chislehurst Caves - caves tour and a social

This is a past event

8 people went

Price: £22.50

Location visible to members


One of the most amazing things about London is the variety of things you can find here. From the most glamarous parties, theatres and shows to the underground world of Camden, from green and vast parks to... CAVES. Yes, there are caves you can explore just south of London!

We have visited them with the group last year and it was heaps of fun.

We could go for some drinks/food in town afterwards.

The price is £22.5 and includes a return train ticket to Chislehurst from London Charring Cross, entry fee, guided tour and paypal and admin fees.

The caves at Chislehurst are a labyrinth of man made tunnels forming a maze covering over six hectares thirty metres below the woodlands above. They were dug for chalk used in lime burning and brick-making for the building of London, also for flints to fire the tinderboxes and flintlock guns of years ago.

First open to the public in the start of the 20th century as a showplace, the guides told the Victorian history of Druids, Romans and Saxons, smuggling and murder.

The last 100 years has added amunitions storage for the Woolwich Arsenal in the[masked] war, mushroom growing in the 1920's & 30's and becoming an underground town as one of the largest deep air-raid shelters in the country, protecting over 15,000 people at the height of the blitz. In the 1960's & 70's as a venue for dances and concerts, presenting the foundations of Jazz, Skiffle & Folk music to the most famous names in pop and rock.

Chislehurst is a delightful mixture of the quaint and the historic. Although the town is just 3 miles (4.8km) from the South Circular, you could be forgiven for thinking that you were in the heart of the countryside.

The inventor of British Summer Time lived in Chislehurst. William Willett was a builder by trade. On this walk you will pass his house, Cedars, which he built himself. It was while out riding in nearby Petts Wood one day that he was inspired by an idea to increase the hours of light in the day 'to improve health and happiness'. He soon became obsessed with the concept. In 1907 he circulated a pamphlet around Parliament and town councils, which argued that the many hours of light wasted while people slept in the mornings should be transferred to the evenings. Although it was met with considerable opposition, a Daylight Saving Bill was introduced in 1909. However, it would take another seven years to pass.

Had it not been for the First World War, Willett's idea may have remained on the shelf but, in 1916, a committee was set up to investigate ways of saving fuel. Consequently Willett's suggestion was given serious consideration. Indeed, it was introduced as a wartime economy measure in many countries on both sides. Sadly, William Willett never lived to see his scheme put into effect as he died in 1915. However, his summer-time legacy lives on and today, Britain keeps Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) in winter and British Summer Time (BST) in summer.


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Getting there and back:

If you are taking a taxi to our event, you try 'bounce' app. They are 40% cheaper than black cabs and if you use a referral code CURIOUS KAT you will be getting £10 credit straight away. Note that the code needs to be inserted at the moment of signing up, just after registering the bank card.

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