Wellington Quarry

Arras, France

20 metres below the pavements of Arras is the Wellington Quarry, a site immersed in memory and emotion. In November 1916, the British started preparing for the 1917 spring offensive. Their stroke of genius: to have the New Zealand tunnellers connect up the town’s chalk extraction tunnels to create a real network of underground barracks large enough to accommodate up to 24,000 soldiers. After a 20-metre descent in a glass-fronted lift, the audio guided and escorted visit plunges the visitor into the site’s atmosphere. A strategic location as well as a living space, the Quarry, named Wellington by the New Zealand sappers, preserves the memory of those thousands of soldiers quartered underground just a few metres from the front, before launching themselves onto the field of battle on 9th April 1917 at 5.30 in the morning, in a surprise attack on the German positions. Through the projection of a film, coming to the surface in the soldiers’ footsteps bring the shock of battle to life.



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Founded: 1916
Category: Statues in France

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4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Wendy Roberts (6 months ago)
Brilliant place to visit, the guides are so knowledgeable. The caves are so interesting, and easy to walk around on the walkways. There is no cafe but a more than adequate vending machine near the gift shop.
Mark C (8 months ago)
The Wellington Tunnels are an amazing experience that is well priced and professionally run. Vincent our guide was amazing, he had us enthralled for the whole experience of the New Zealand tunnellers in WWI. This is a must do for all military enthusiasts.
Jason Gurney (9 months ago)
Spine chillingly wonderful experience coming from New Zealand. Our thanks to the many Kiwi miners who created this cave system during WW1. If you are a Kiwi and near Arras this is a must see location. Our guide was extraordinary. Thank you.
Duncan Seed (11 months ago)
Amazing place and a Must Do for any kiwi visiting this part of France. Great value for money and an amazing engineering feat and part of New Zealand's first world war contribution to history. Highly recommend
sandeep gunnam (13 months ago)
If you are interested in history and good place to visit in Arras. They will take you into the tunnels underground in a comfortable lift and they path underground is fully packed with wood so no inconvenience at all. They explain the complete story with audio and visuals.
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