A new air-raid shelter has been discovered in the garden of the Girona Municipal School of Music
This latest find is a magnificent and unique example of a purpose-built tunnel-style air-raid shelter in this city, and is very different to the popular cellular-style air-raid shelter located in the Jardí de la Infància.
The discovery was made possible thanks to a book, entitled Bombes sobre Girona (Bombs over Girona), which is being written on this theme by historians Jaume Prat and Jordi Pericot for the City History Museum. In this particular case, the shelter was found buried under the garden of the Municipal School of Music in Carrer de Barcelona, which occupies the old offices of the popular Farinera La Montserrat flour mill. The mill was founded in 1898 by the Ensesa family and lasted until 1989, at which point the factory and warehouses were demolished leaving only the building that we can see today still standing. This building had been renovated and extended by local architect Rafael Masó between 1913 and 1915.
The shelter is in a good state of preservation, despite being buried up to a height of about 70 cm. It is even still possible to see the original electrical installation with the ceramic insulators and plaited electrical wires of the time. Today, however, it is only possible to access half of the tunnel, up as far as the buttress which divides it into two parts or cells. The rest of the tunnel was bricked up and filled in with sand when construction work was done in Passeig d’Olot at the beginning of the 1980s.
The shelter was built during the first half of 1938 to protect the workers at the flour mill in case of air raids, and could comfortably accommodate some 100 people.