(All images by author)

Once upon a time air-raid shelters were a common feature of suburban back gardens all across Britain, as families took cover from German bombers during World War Two. But their numbers have diminished significantly over the decades, due to a combination of modern development and landscape redesign that has seen many demolished or simply buried.

But despite the march of progress, a decent number of air raid shelters have survived, like this one on the west side of Sheffield, South Yorkshire. Once offering crucial defense during the Sheffield Blitz of December 1940, it now enjoys a more peaceful existence doubling up as a childhood den and a place to store the garden tools and winter logs.

Wartime air-raid shelters came in all shapes and sizes, from adapted cellars and basements to urban communal shelters (including abandoned subway stations) and various prefab, kit-built suburban garden shelters.

Keep reading – check out this Modern House Adapted from a Derelict Pig Barn, and these Artists’ Studios made from Recycled London Tube Trains.