On a last minute unplanned trip on a cold friday evening I decided to take a short trip west to Helsby hill in Cheshire to test out some new equipment I'd recently invested in. As usual, I intended to be back before sunlight but was thoroughly glad that I stayed to witness the landscape changing before me, even if I had to find my way back in total darkness!
Helsby is widely known to have been a hillfort during the bronze ages, and settlements here are believed to have first been established as far back as 4000 BC. With wide open views of the surrounding landscape spanning over to Runcorn, Chester & Ellesmere port, it is easy to see why many have chosen this spot as a safe refuge over the centuries. Its sandstone foundation remains largely unchanged and is now protected by the national trust. In 1970 a trig point was placed on the hill to for surveying purposes.
100 yards inland from the edge of the cliff face is a little known relic of cold-war Britain. A nuclear bunker, or ROC post, still lies dormant upon the hill surrounded by private farmland. Up until around 20 years ago it was still in pristine condition despite having been decommissioned, but unfortunately has since been fire damaged inside, leaving nothing but burnt ash and rubble for explorers to find. These were placed across the British Isles to monitor the event of a nuclear attack from Russia, and spots such as this were chosen for their vantage points and strategic location. This, however has to be the most dramatically positioned bunker I've seen yet. One can only imagine what the views across the Mersey estuary would have been like if the worst actually came to happen!