3 September 2015
By Chris Baraniuk
[Why did tobacco merchant Joseph Williamson have his men build tunnels under Liverpool?] Did he ask them to build his tunnels arbitrarily, for no other purpose than to be paid for work? […] Perhaps Williamson wanted secret passages to get to and from buildings in Edge Hill. Or was a smuggler and needed the tunnels to carry out covert operations. Or maybe he and his wife belonged to a fanatical religious cult that anticipated the end of the world, and his tunnels were designed to provide shelter during the apocalypse. Apparently, someone once made the suggestion casually on television, and the idea since stuck.