Abandoned Cold War bunker hidden under city suburb could be yours for £40,000

An abandoned Cold War bunker is on the market for the starting price of just £40,000.

The unassuming brick building offers a glimpse into history behind decades of overgrowth.

The former civil defence control centre is a perfectly preserved 1960s time capsule.

The brick property is in one of the Welsh capital’s priciest suburbs.

But this slice of real estate needs a lot of work to make it inhabitable.

The Cardiff County Council-owned former civil defence control centre bunker is tucked away among period properties in the Llandaff area.

It was built to coordinate local operations in the event of an emergency in 1956 and remained operational until the Civil Defence Corps, who were stationed there, were disbanded in 1968.

In 2012, Graham Tatnell spoke of his time as a member of the corps at the building.

He said it could have become a Cold War nerve centre should a ‘World War III’ ever have become a reality.

The former hospital technician said: “I know it was supposed to be for nuclear warfare.

“But no-one would have been any help if there was a bomb dropped. But we did flood relief and Aberfan and other disasters.

“When we finished, the chairman just shut the doors and left so all the things that we had were left there, including photos.

“It was sad that the place has deteriorated and it had obviously been vandalised.”

From the year when the corps left in 1968 the building was run and looked after by volunteers until 1984 and then served as the county standby control room and used for storage until its doors closed for the final time in 1991.

Since then it has been dormant with just nature, wildlife and the occasional trespasser visiting, some of whom have sadly illegally helped themselves to items that Graham remembers were left in the building.

It was reported in 2013 that the local Llandaff Society group were looking into turning the building into a Cold War museum.

But the damage caused by vandals and the elements is said to have hampered this suggestion ever becoming a reality.

Author Nick Catford took photographs of the inside of the building to document the building in 2003.

Mr Catford specialises in researching and writing books on the intriguing historic buildings of Britain’s past, including bunkers and tunnels as well as trains and railways.

Nick’s incredible images give a snapshot of the building’s past, frozen in time.

He describes his visit on website subbrit.org.uk, writing: “There is a store room with Dexion shelving, still stacked with equipment, much of it dating from World War Two.

“There are a large number of tin helmets, stretchers, gas masks, dustbins, buckets, stacked tables, and a large quantity of small wooden blocks (unknown use).

He continues: “The adjacent room is also a store although it was originally the dormitory with bunk beds still in place along two walls.

“There’s more furniture here plus respirators and a wheelbarrow.

“Internally the bunker has changed very little since it was built and feels like a 1950s bunker as soon as you walk through the door.”

Some of the documents Mr Catford saw that day, plus items removed at the time of the building’s closure, have apparently been given to the Glamorgan Archive in, Cardiff.

Now the bunker is going to auction at a guide price of £40,000 with Seel & Co.

The auction house describes the 2,000-sq ft property as a single-storey building of brick construction with a flat roof, one door and currently no window openings.

Its rooms in the past provided an office, control room, living and sleeping accommodation, referring back to the property’s intended use.

The auction house selling the bunker says that the building may be suitable for a variety of uses, subject to achieving the necessary planning consent.

The control centre bunker is for sale by online auction for a guide price of £40,000 and bidding will open 9am Tuesday on the auctioneer’s website.