for the Spain they believed to be better:
air-raid shelter under Granollers Town Hall
According to Cinta Cantarell and Can Jonch / Centre de Cultura per la Pau “the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39 radically transformed life in Granollers. Revolutionary changes, mobilizations, collectivizations, the arrival of refugees from the war zones, the need for more housing and, above all, the human costs of the war, were all prominent events during the period. However, the air raids that took place on 31 May 1938 and on 24, 25 and 26 January 1939 were, by far, the events that most shook the town.
On Tuesday 31 May 1938 Granollers came under attack from five Italian Savoia-S79 aero-planes serving general Franco. No warning was given. At 9:05 a.m. and within one minute, the planes dropped 60 bombs and 750 kilos of shrapnel on a defenseless town, at peak-hour, when people were on their way to work, school or shopping. The official casualty count was 224 dead and 165 wounded. Over a hundred buildings were affected. The town had practically no air-raid shelters for accommodating large numbers of people. Shortly afterwards, on 3 June, the mayor circulated an edict calling up work brigades for the purpose of building some.”
The manuals of the Junta de Defensa Passiva proposed a kind of shelter that was fast and simple to build. In general terms, they were projected taking into account the weight of the bombs: the greater the weight, the greater depth required or it needed to be covered with a slab of concrete. However, the reality was that the resistance of the shelters was directly related to the amount of material and economic resources that could be spent on their construction.
In the shelters projected during the second part of the war, when the aerial attacks on cities became a frequent practice and people had to take shelter for hours or days at a time, they were planned to be provided with minimum basic services, such as electricity, natural or artificial chimneys to renew the air, benches for sitting on and hygienic and sanitary fittings.
Most of the shelters that we know about in the city were the gallery type. They were tunnels that were excavated in a zigzag shape to alleviate the effect of the bombs, with small wider spaces which were used to distribute people better. They had two entrances to make access in and out of them easier. At least one cellular type was also built, in Plaça Maluquer i Salvador, with the area distributed into small compartments that communicated with each other and gave on to a common corridor, which was wider than the gallery kind.
Access to the shelters was by means of a flight of bricks steps, with one or two bends to prevent the entrance of shrapnel and the shock wave. The entrances were protected by small pavilions with a sloped roof to deviate the path of the bomb and to prevent rainwater from getting in. The walls were supposed to be lined and covered with vaults, but many of them were not finished and there are still stretches of galleries that were just excavated into the earth.
These pictures were taken in June 2018 and show the shelter built under Granollers Town Hall.