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Channel Tunnel

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Channel Tunnel
Tunnel sous la Manche
Location Map ( geo)
Channel tunnel terminus from Castle Hill - Geograph - 315408.jpg
Channel tunnel terminus from Castle Hill
Cameraicon.png View gallery (11)
From:  Folkestone (TR195376)
To:  Calais (TR680208)
Distance:  50.5 km (31.4 miles)
Kent • Pas de Calais
Error: Pas de Calais is not a county
Opening Date
Current Operator
Euro Tunnel
from £44 (Cars)
Additional Information
Tunnel Type:  Bored Tunnel
On road(s)
M20, A16 (France)

The Channel Tunnel is a major crossing of the English Channel. Nick named the Chunnel and opening in 1994 It is one of the world's longest Tunnels and it took over 150 years to build though the current bore took six years to build. The Tunnel is actually three tunnels. You have the two main rail tunnels that take International services between London, Paris & Brussels, Railfreight for routes throughout Europe and a motorail service between the two termini. Eurostar services now use HS1. The third tunnel is a service tunnel where maintenance and safety vehicles used to get to problems very fast.


Once of the earliest bore was built around 1802 but was cancelled due to the Napoleonic Wars. The 1880 bore was also a failure. However that bore discovered coal and thus led to the East Kent Coalfield. There was also more ambitious plan that had a road tunnel and bridge and rail tunnel. Called Euroroute, it would have linked the M20 to France's A26 Autoroute. This was planed at the same time as the current tunnel but was rejected. The current tunnel began work in 1988 and in 1990, the two sides met. In 1994, two Class 319's became the first passenger rail vehicles to cross the tunnel.


The Tunnel's safety record is very good. On both sides of the Tunnel there are safety crews and on the Le Shuttle, there are safety messages in both English and French. Also the Service tunnel services as the main evacuation route from the tunnel.

Unfortunately, there have been two fires. Both on motorail freight services. The first occurred in 1996, just two years after opening. This fire was caused by a truck carrying polycrine. The second happened in 2007 again by a lorry fire though this time not plastic. There have been no rail or car shuttles problems so far.


British Side

Route To Notes


London, Ashford E15


Ramsgate, Canterbury, Folkestone, Dover E15


Sellindge, Ashford (M20), Hythe (A261)


Folkestone, Cheriton

French Side

Route To Notes


Boulogne, Rouen E402


Calais, Dunkirk, Lille, Paris, Brussels E15, E40


Channel Tunnel
A16 (France) • A20 • B2064 • E15 • Euroroute • M20 • Pilgrims Way • POLO
Related Pictures
View gallery (11)
Postcard 10 - Coppermine - 1215.jpgChannel Tunnel Terminal (C) Robert Zozmann - Geograph - 2267608.jpgM20 coastbound at Junction 11a (C) Colin Pyle - Geograph - 4024152.jpgSunset At Castle Hill In Folkestone.jpgFrench & English Level Crossing Sign.jpg
Crossings of the English Channel
Kent and SussexRamsgate to Ostend • Dover to Zeebrugge • Dover to Ostend • Dover to Dunkerque • Dover to Calais • Dover to Boulogne • Dover to Dieppe • Euroroute • Channel Tunnel • Folkestone to Ostend • Folkestone to Calais • Folkestone to Boulogne • Lydd to Le Touquet • Newhaven to Dieppe
PortsmouthPortsmouth to Bilbao • Portsmouth to Caen • Portsmouth to Cherbourg • Portsmouth to Le Havre • Portsmouth to Santander • Portsmouth to St Malo
Dorset and DevonPoole to Cherbourg • Poole to St Malo • Weymouth to St Malo • Plymouth to Roscoff • Plymouth to Santander
Channel IslandsPoole - Guernsey & Jersey • Weymouth - Guernsey & Jersey • Jersey to St Malo
IrelandCork to Santander • Cork to Roscoff • Rosslare to Cherbourg • Rosslare to Bilbao • Rosslare to Le Havre • Rosslare to Roscoff • Dublin to Cherbourg
Other AreasIrish Sea • Inner Hebrides • Western Isles • Shetland • Orkney • North Sea • English Channel • Solent • Inland Crossings • Other Island Crossings

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