February 1939

Deep Shelters to be Part of Safety Plans
By a special correspondent

“Dundee is far behind in A.R.P.”
This is a criticism prevalent in the city, and this week I made inquiries to find out something of the extent of the complaints and the existing position.

One conclusion I arrived at is “There is a move on” The blackout arranged for Monday, 27th March is indication of the progress.

Deep shelters have this week come under discussion as essential measures for safety.

First let us take the complaints. Folk tell you nothing is being done in Dundee – no mask fitting up our way – we hear that (say) Glasgow or Perth are far ahead of Dundee.

Wardens complain they have received no communication since October – there are no posters appealing to Dundee people.

The frank admission that it is perfectly true that other places are further ahead was made to me by an A.R.P. authority. And here is his statement on the causes of this position:-

“It has to be borne in mind that these places started their A.R.P. services earlier than Dundee, and it was only within the last year that Dundee has taken A.R.P. seriously.

“Since that time considerable progress has been made, and in the short time in which we have been engaged in A.R.P. work we have covered a great deal of ground.

“It was only after the Moderate Party came into power again in November 1937 that a committee was set up to consider the matter of A.R.P. and to take the necessary steps.

“By that time most places in Scotland, and in fact, Great Britain, had already commenced their schemes. It has also to be remembered that all expenditure must first be approved by the Home Office, and the committee have refrained from spending money which would be wholly borne by the tax payer.”

Another phase of A.R.P. that has come into prominence in citizens’ discussions this week is the realisation that one of the essential measures in air-raid safety is the establishment of permanent deep shelters. An ambitious scheme by the burgh of Finsbury, London, with shelters to accommodate up to 7600 people had been widely talked about. Under this it is calculated that ten minutes warning of an air-raid would be given, and by the location of the shelters the whole population would be in safety within that time.
Then on Friday came the report that underground shelters are to be an integral part of the Government’s policy in the future, and that Sir John Anderson had come to the conclusion that deep shelters are practical and are necessary in some areas.

I had a talk with a Dundee A.R.P. leader, and here are his views on the subject.
“I think that the present government scheme for the provision of shelters is inadequate, and is not merely nibbling at the problem, but a waste of public money.

“The real question of providing deep underground accommodation should be tackled by the Government at once, as it will ultimately require to be done.

“These tunnels or underground roads could be so made as to be useful for peacetime purposes, and would provide shelter for the population in an aerial bombardment”.

In my interview I found that a main consideration is that deep shelters provide the highest measure of safety, and in various quarters the lessons learned in the experience of raids on town in the Spanish War are being applied in the evolving of shelter schemes.

When consideration was give to their utilisation n peace time one line taken was that in some cases the shelters might be used as motor parking places, thus helping to solve a pressing problem in a city like Dundee.

Here are some suggestions for deep shelters in Dundee:-
A tunnel connecting Dundee with Newport, which would form a good road service between Dundee and Fife, and would be a natural alternative to a road bridge. The cost would indeed be great, but by a system of tolls it would become a profitable expenditure. An instance of this type of scheme is provided by the Mersey Tunnel.

In busier parts of the city, where there is some danger on pedestrian crossings, tunnels could be provided to enable people cross in safety and would form excellent shelter in war-time. There are many instances of these in London.

It was pointed out to me that Dundee has a “deep shelter” almost ready made in the Law Tunnel. The tunnel is open through and through and could easily be widened, other exits made, and ventilation shafts driven.

The tunnel’s situation would serve a considerable population, housing schemes and a school on the north side, and many houses on the south side. It is stated that the tunnel could accommodate 5000 people.

A tunnel in King Street towards its junction with the Cowgate. This shelter tunnel led into the slope would seem to fit the needs of a peace-time car part.

The needs of other districts of the city, would, of course, come under consideration in the event of a survey.

One site mentions was at City Road, where there is a project to build houses under the Fleming Trust. The contention was that this was an opportunity to consider a shelter in the area with a large population.

Dundee’s hilly situation, it was pointed out, would permit of a good amount of tunnelling starting from the level, and one opinion given to me was that a complete scheme could be carried out if the Government decide that such shelters must be established.

Cost, of course, is a vital factor, though there is a growing opinion that full use might be made of the unemployed in a matter of such national importance. If that were done a saving in one branch of expenditure would be effected.

Walked on by Thousands

Thousands of Dundee folk have walked on the city’s biggest jute carpet during the past few months. Few even realise that Dundee’s “own” produce is used extensively in this manufacture!

The carpet, covering an area of over 5000 square feet, is laid in the Palace Theatre, and the management is proud of its boast that it is doing its bit to help on the jute industry.

Made entirely of jute by a Dundee firm, the carpet is something of an “experiment”.

It looked like being successful for after several months, during which time thousands of folk have walked over it, the carpet is showing practically no signs of wear and tear.

Of Persian design, the carpet cost only a third of the price of an ordinary wool carpet. A unique feature of the carpet is its fireproof qualities. A burning match or cigarette has little or no effect on the jute surface. A big worry of the management was overcome by the success of the new fire-proofing process.

If the experiment proves satisfactory a big future may be opened up for fire-proof jute carpets in cinemas and theatres.

Hear This One Tonight

Pye Q/70, Battery model.
Was 8 gns
Clearing for £5
J.D. Brown
28, Castle Street, Dundee.

D.P.M. Regent Restauran

Nethergate, Dundee
Ideal for Marriages, Whist Drives, or and Business Meeting.
Rooms all well furnished and comfortable, while the service is second to none.
Terms and specimen menus from
Mr J.K. Birse, Regent Restaurant.
Phone 2368.

Apricot and Pineapple Jam

“This is a cheap and delicious jam” says Mrs Baxter, Glenfarg.
Take 1lb dried apricots and 1 small tin pineapple chunks. Wash the apricots well, soak in 3 large breakfast cupfuls water for two days. Put into pan, add juice of pineapple, and boil for one hour, then add 4½ lb sugar and chunks, cut small. Boil together for half an hour.

New Cannery for Dundee

A new canning factory is to be established in Dundee.
Premises have been acquired in Park Wynd by Calindus Ltd, Edinburgh, a firm that is at present preparing a cannery at Inverness.

When the Inverness centre is set agoing this month, work is likely to start on the preparation of the firm’s Dundee premises at Park Wynd, which are to be equipped as a cannary.

It is probable that production will start in the Dundee establishment in the autumn of this year. Between 20 and 50 Dundee workers will be employed to begin with, but should the venture be well supported that number will be greatly increased.

Fish, meat and soups make from local vegetables will be among the canned produce turned out at Dundee. Most of the food stuffs will be taken from local sources.

An official of the company told me that if the Inverness and Dundee ventures were well supported it was likely that canneries would be started in various parts of Scotland, particularly the Highlands.

Palace Theatre

Tuesday February 7 – and all week.
Matinees daily at 2.30
Once nightly at 7.30
The Daniel Mayer Company present
Jean Forbes-Robertson in
Peter Pan
By J.M. Barrie
Direct from the London Palladium season.
Popular prices for one week only
5/9, 4/6, 2/6, & 1/6
No telephone bookings.

Day Old Chicks

Rhode Island Reds and White Leg-Horns from blood-tested stock.
Chicks, £4 per 100
Eggs, £2 per 100
Carriage paid
Alex Grey
Cowstrandburn, Dunfermline, Fife.

United’s Trialist

By Unomi
I told you last week that United would turn out a midget out-side right from a Glasgow Central League against Alloa. The boy duly turned out, and played a dazzling game until he was injured and had to retire. In style he is not unlike Gavin Smith of Dumbarton. The player, I can reveal now, is Hugh Clark of Greyfriars. The United officials were delighted with his play, and are to ask him to turn out again. He will probably be played against Edinburgh City at Tannadice next week.