Surrey Young Walkers

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  • Fan Bay Deep Shelter in the White Cliffs of Dover

    Saturday 11th August

    Start Time 09:30 Host Paul Start Time CT16 1HJ

    Meeting point: Visitor Centre, Langdon Cliffs, Upper Road, Dover, Kent, CT16 1HJ

    Organiser contact:


Join us as we explore the Fan Bay deep shelter. This is a tunnel complex that was constructed in 1940/41 in the White Cliffs of Dover as accommodation for the gun battery above. Today this network of abandoned tunnels is virtually all that remains of these long-forgotten defences. For more information please visit

We will meet at the visitor centre at 9:30 to check our numbers and their availability. The following information is provided by the National Trust:


Please note the following:

  • Tickets for the tunnels tours are sold at the Fan Bay tunnel entrance on a first-come, first-served basis. Tours leave every 30 minutes through the day with a maximum of 12 people on each tour. National Trust Members can visit for free but must show a valid membership card at the tunnel entrance.
  • Due to the remote location we are unable to accept payments by card.
  • You can check the availability of tunnel tickets by asking in the White Cliffs Visitor Centre, before walking to the tunnel entrance.
  • The opening times of the tunnels varies through the year. Please check if the tunnels are open before your visit. You can check when we're open on our opening times page.
  • There is an age restriction of 12 as we do not think the raw nature of the tunnels is suitable for under this age.
  • It takes 45 minutes to walk to the tunnels, which are located 1 ½ miles from the White Cliffs Visitor Centre.
  • The tunnels are only accessible by 125 steep steps to get into the shelter and back out again.
  • All visitors must have sensible shoes or boots to visit the tunnels, sandals and heeled shoes are not suitable; access to the tunnels could be refused if footwear is unsuitable.
  • There is no toilet or catering facilities at the tunnels. The nearest are located ½ mile (15-minute walk) away at the South Foreland Lighthouse.
  • The nearest parking is at the White Cliffs of Dover Visitor Centre. There is a small parking charge of £4.00 per car (free for National Trust members). Please note the car park closes each day at 7pm.
  • You don’t need to bring a torch as we will provide one but you will need to wear sensible footwear, access to the tunnels could be refused if footwear is unsuitable.
  • Although the tunnels don’t feel confined you will be 70 feet underground and this may not be suitable for those who are claustrophobic.
  • Please contact us should you need further information please check out our FAQs.

Our walk gradings

  • E


    Easy Walks are for anyone who does not have a mobility difficulty, a specific health problem or is seriously unfit. Suitable for pushchairs if they can be lifted over occasional obstructions. Comfortable shoes or trainers can be worn.

  • L


    Leisurely Walks are for reasonably fit people with at least a little country walking experience. May include unsurfaced rural paths.

  • M


    Moderate Walks are for people with country walking experience and a good level of fitness. May include some steep paths and open country, and may be at a brisk pace. Walking boots and warm waterproof clothing are highly recommended.

  • S


    Strenuous Walks are for experienced country walkers with an above average fitness level. May include hills and rought country, and may be at a brisk pace. Walking boots and warm waterproof clothing are essential. People in doubt about their fitness are advised to contact the walk leader in advance.

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About our walks

Non-members are welcome to join us for 3 "trial" walks before deciding to join us. You don't need to book in advance - just turn up on the day.

All our walks are graded to give you an idea of what each one will be like. If you're unsure of your fitness level, try a short, easy walk first. It's better to find a walk too easy than to make yourself miserable and exhausted.

Please remember

  • Bring appropriate clothing and footwear for the weather conditions.
  • Bring something to drink, even if the walk has a pub stop. On most full day walks you'll need to bring a picnic lunch. The walk details will show this.
  • If you wish to bring your dog on a walk, you must ask the walk leader in advance as some walks are not suitable for dogs.
  • Please arrive early so that the walk can start on time. We'll wait up to 10 minutes if you let us know you've been delayed en-route.

All our walks are led by SYW members. Please follow their instructions, don't walk ahead of them, and let them know if you decide to leave the walk before the end.

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