Wiltshire

'Ghost village' on Salisbury Plain opened to public

A Routemaster bus on its way to the deserted village of Imber on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire Image copyright PA
Image caption Roads through the MoD-controlled village are opened to the public on a handful of occasions

Passengers have been taken by bus to a Salisbury Plain "ghost village" which was abandoned in 1943.

The deserted Wiltshire village of Imber was cleared during World War Two and later taken over by the military.

Vintage Routemaster buses have been used to take passengers to the village, for one day each year, since 2009.

The area is normally closed to civilians as it sits in the middle of a Ministry of Defence training zone.

Image copyright PA

Villagers were given a few weeks' notice to pack their bags and leave before the community was abandoned in December 1943.

It was needed by the army to provide an exercise area for US troops preparing to invade Europe.

In the 1970s, several empty houses were built for use by UK soldiers taking part in training exercises.

Image copyright PA

St Giles Church, the only original building left intact, was also opened to visitors for the weekend.

Image copyright PA
Image copyright PA
Image copyright PA

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