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Morrison Air Raid Shelter

Discussion in 'The Blitz' started by Jim, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    An air-raid shelter for use within the home was designed, tested and found satisfactory, and was made available to the public in 1941. According to Mr. Herbert Morrison, it achieved not only dispersal but warmth and dryness, and it avoided the discomfort of leaving home at night and the dislocation of family life. The new shelter, which was in the form of a table with removable sides, was not proof against a direct hit, but, installed on the lowest floor, it gave protection against the debris caused by the collapse of a two or three storied house from a nearby explosion. The sheet of steel which formed the top had been tested by having a heavy weight dropped upon it, and also by a blow similar to that of a collapsing floor. The steel mesh sides also protected the inmates from debris. Two average-sized adults and a child, two adults and two infants, or even four thin adults could be accommodated inside the cage; the floor was sprung to take a mattress. When not in use as a shelter the sides could be removed and the top utilized as a table. Mr. Morrison stated that distribution would be limited at first to certain areas more vulnerable than others, and, within those areas, to householders un-provided with an Anderson shelter. To such it was free, provided that the household’s income did not exceed £350 a year. To others the cost was about £8.


    Indoor Shelter beds were 6 ft. 6 in. long and 4 ft., wide and weighed 5 cwt., about the weight of a Grand piano. The shelters were supplied in parts and were put together by the house holder.

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    A fortified bunkbed known as a Two-Tier Morrison Shelter, designed as an indoor air raid shelter, 1942.

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    Dual Purpose Furniture: Morrison Shelter/Ping-Pong Table

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    Morrison indoor air raid shelter

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  2. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    The Morrison shelter was an indoor table shelter assembled from a kit and then bolted together inside the house. The steel top doubled as a table and each side had wire mesh panels, one of which contained a door. This type of shelter was issued to people who did not have a garden and got its name from the Minister for Home Security, Mr Herbert Morrison. They were approximately 2 metres (6 ft 6 in) long and 1.2 metres (4 ft) wide and 0.75 metres (2 ft 6 in) high, so they weren't ideal places to hide if you were claustrophobic.

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    Clementine Churchill, the wife of the wartime prime minister, Winston Churchill, is pictured with the home secretary, Herbert Morrison while they conduct an official visit together.
     

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