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Issue:- 10 July 2014

Open Day to mark the 80th Anniversary of Queensway Tunnel

TO celebrate the 80th Anniversary of the Queensway Tunnel, why not come along to an open day on 19 July 2014, to find out what lies beneath the surface of this iconic structure; an engineering feat of its time.

In July 1934, over 200,000 people gathered at the Old Haymarket to watch King George V and Queen Mary officially open the 2.13 mile Birkenhead tunnel.

Merseytravel is commemorating this milestone Anniversary with a series of free activities at George's Dock building on Saturday, 19 July 2014, between 10am and 4pm, for the public to see the extent of what goes on to keep the tunnels operating safely and efficiently.

A series of free tunnel tours will run during the open day. Guides will take people around one of the ventilation stations, beneath the City to see the tunnel road surface and visitors will also find out how they are monitored 24/7. Places need to be booked in advance.

A small exhibition featuring old memorabilia, photographs, original materials from the building of the tunnel and old artefacts donated by members of the public will be on display at George's Dock building, as well as a film showing original footage of the tunnels.

The front entrance doors of George's Dock building will be opened specially to allow people to see down to one of the original giant fresh air fans which, weighing a massive 25 tonnes, and generates enough fresh air in one minute to fill 6 Olympic sized swimming pools.

Engineers will run a number of talks through the day to explain how the control room works and how they maintain heating, lighting and air quality for the tunnels. Maintenance vehicles will also be on display outside the building.

Mersey Tunnels Police will be on hand to talk about the work they do to ensure the safe operation of the tunnels. They will also have their vehicle on display for visitors to see, including the firefighting and emergency care equipment they use when attending incidents.  Merseytravel's Chair Councillor Liam Robinson said:- "The open day will give people a real taster of all the work that goes into keeping the tunnel efficient and safe as a key transport route; vital to the Liverpool City Region economy. Maintaining the tunnels is a significant undertaking, not least because of age, and there is so much work that goes on behind the scenes to keep them operating effectively.  We hope that as many people come along to the event as possible and help us celebrate this key milestone date in history."

There are only a limited number of spaces left for free tunnel tours on Saturday, 19 July 2014, running at 10am, 12noon and 2pm. Please note, there are many steps to walk up and down during the tour and therefore it is not suitable for anybody with breathing or walking difficulties. Unfortunately, only children over 10 years of age are allowed on the tour. The tours must be pre-booked, availability is on a 1st come 1st served basis and places are limited to four per group. To book email:- or contact 0151 330 4504.

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