Set in the heart of Whitehall just off Horseguards lie the secret underground headquarters where Churchill and his team directed the Second World War. They are the Churchill War Rooms.

Churchill War Rooms
Find the Churchill War Rooms, tucked away underneath the Treasury Building.

The Churchill War Rooms is currently celebrating the 80th anniversary of the operational opening of these war rooms. The rooms are brilliantly preserved and all in their original state. It is a time-warp like no other.

Churchill War Rooms
Winston Churchill, the man himself

It’s extraordinary that these war rooms were actually kept secret, but they were. Located only one floor down under one of the main Treasury Buildings. In fact, if they had taken a direct hit, it would have been catastrophic.

Inside the War Rooms

Churchill apparently was relatively un-phased by the prospect – he only spent 3 nights in the bunker, preferring his more comfortable bed in the upstairs Treasury Building to which there is a secret staircase!

Churchill War Rooms
Bed-time map reading with cigar!

Churchill’s bedroom in the bunker was lined with maps. He was a man obsessed by them. In addition to the bed, there is a desk from which he broadcast a few of his important speeches. Note the cigar perched by his bed!

Churchill War Rooms
The decision (cabinet) room.

Probably the most impressive and historic room is the Cabinet War Room itself. Decisions inside this room determined the course and outcome of the Second World War. Everything is perfectly preserved; the ubiquitous maps lining every wall, Churchill’s red government box, letter-opener, and those ashtrays for his cigars.

Winston’s original oak chair sits at the head. Gouge marks made by his signet ring on the left hand side, clearly show the sign of his jangling nerves in what must have been critical discussions.

Churchill War Rooms
Planning campaigns.

Original maps line every wall. Sleeping quarters, the cabinet room, the switchboard, the map room, there is so much to see and take in. Multi-coloured telephones were the hot-lines to the Allies’ Commanders and operations rooms.

Churchill War Rooms
Coloured telephone hot lines to Allied Commanders and Operation rooms
Important visitors book.

The visitor book recorded the visits from King George V1 with his wife Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, Dwight Eisenhower, Attlee. Remarkable when you think how secret the place was.

Verdict on Churchill War Rooms

This is a truly fascinating place to visit – we cannot recommend it higher. and you could spend hours here.
Open 9.30-6pm every day. Book Tickets HERE. Needless to say there is a great shop.