The Carrière Wellington museum opened in March 2008 in Arras in the North of France, inside a quarry used during World War I. It commemorates those who built the tunnels and, subsequently, fought in the Battle of Arras during World War I. The Arras Tunnels formed an intricate network that ran from the town center to the German front lines, and housed over 20,000 soldiers of the British Empire and the Commonwealth. In fact, it was New Zealand soldiers who named the quarry after the city of the same name in their home country.
Although they were used as air shelters during the Second World War, the tunnels remained essentially forgotten until their rediscovery in 1990. 350 meters of the quarry’s galleries, located approximately 22 meters underground, can be accessed today. The museum showcases historical artifacts to help visitors understand the context around the Battle of Arras, notably why the military strategy was so remarkable at the time and what life was like for the underground soldiers.
The Carrière Wellington is located on Rue Arthur Delétoille in Arras; it can be reached in two hours from Paris via roads A1 and D939. The guided visit takes one hour, and a maximum of 17 people can access the quarry at any given time. The temperature of the quarry is 11 °C (52 °F) year-round; visitors should bring an extra layer. The museum is open every day from 10 am to 12:30 and from 1:30 pm to 6 pm. Entry costs €6.90 per adult, and €3.20 per student and children under 6.