Civil War passive defence network in Girona arouses much interest
On Sunday 2 May, over thirty persons took part in a guided walk around the passive defence elements (barricades, trenches and shelters) built in Girona during the Spanish Civil War (1936-39), as one of the «Walk through History» itineraries organised by the City History Museum.
Once again, the walk was led by historian Jaume Prat (Salt, 1965), who enabled the group to experience, for just over two hours, the impact of the air raids over the city of Girona. The itinerary took in the sites where the various types of shelters were built or fitted out, and was also designed to immerse participants in that particular period of history. The group members could experience, as realistically as possible, the civilians' anguish and fear caused by the air-raid sirens, the noise of overhead planes, the whistle of falling bombs, and the explosions and destruction in Girona. While Jaume Prat was giving an introduction to the museum's Room 13, dedicated to the Civil War, a siren for an air-raid drill went off and the group had to descend as quickly as possible to the Coal Cellar (the official shelter for the Provincial Secondary School which was housed in the building during that period); then, with the lights out, there followed a re-enactment of an air attack inside the claustrophobic air-raid shelter at Jardí d'Infància. This shelter, the only one currently open to the public, will shortly host the museum exhibition entitled Bombs over Girona, curated by Jaume Prat in collaboration with Jordi Pericot. The research carried out by both historians over the last year, during which they were able to rediscover long-forgotten air-raid shelters around the city. These included Les Bernardes shelter, and Carles Marx Primary School shelter.