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The Woolpack Volunteer Centre

Posted: Friday 7th November 2014 by The Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust

Woolpack Battery Entrance. By Kathy

The Woolpack bunker is home to the volunteers of the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust, and many people who visit the islands often wonder what it's like down in the Woolpack Bunker. Well, volunteers Abbie Pailing and Lydia Titterton have put together a little information about it. We hope it gives you a better idea as to what life is like down in the bunker!


The Woolpack Battery, situated on the southern point of the Garrison, is home to the Wildlife Trust Volunteers. Built in 1900 the Woolpack was originally a gun battery housing two guns, to protect Scilly from any French invasion. However, whilst it was being built, the Germans became a bigger threat and the battery was only in use for six years. Since then it has been used as a homing beacon to help guide anti-submarine aircraft during World War II, a casual labourers home, and since 2000 a place for wildlife trust volunteers to live.

One of the most common questions asked when members of the public speak to us, is "What is it like living in the Woolpack?". To answer, it’s surprisingly cosy. There are no windows in the bedrooms, which does mean you have to really trust your alarm clock, but it also means minimal heat loss. The bedrooms are set out as dormitories with 4 girls sharing a room, 2 boys sharing another, and one single room. We do have most of the usual home comforts, including WiFi, sofas, a washing machine and a fully equipped kitchen. With seven of us living there, it’s never lonely, and it’s surprisingly easy to forget that you’re living underground.

Abbie says "Living in the woolpack has definitely increased my acceptance of creepy crawlies as cellar spiders are compulsory pets. However, if you can live with the spiders and dark, the view from the top of the battery is incredible and definitely outweighs the negatives of living in this extraordinary place."
 

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