A NETWORK of tunnels under Old Town could mean many homes are sitting on passageways full of history.

The Adver is appealing to residents who know of tunnels underneath their properties to get in touch.

Last week, North Street property owner Ken Woolley came forward and said a tunnel ran underneath a house there.

But it is believed it is one of many that are still to be discovered.

The small tunnel, which is only about 3ft in height, is a smaller version of three extensive 8ft high by 12ft wide tunnels under Villetts House in Cricklade Street.

The two largest tunnels, about 100ft in length, travel under the house towards the Goddard Arms Hotel.

Amateur historian Jean Allen is not surprised at the tunnel harboured in North Street.

"There are tunnels all over the place in Old Town," said Mrs Allen, who is also the chairwoman of the Swindon Society.

"They likely stem from the old smuggling days when gin was smuggled from Holland."

She says Flemish weavers who settled in Corsham, Calne and Trowbridge had a taste for gin and needed to get it smuggled cheap from Holland.

"There isn't much written down as it is all legend," said Mrs Allen.

"But the legends are still going strong and the tunnels are being discovered. There is a lot of fact to back up the legends. The tunnels come up so frequently."

She believes the tunnel underneath Mr Woolley's property was likely used as a cellar for storage, as it isn't high enough for a person to walk through.

Local historian Cilla Slipper, who conducts walking tours around Old Town, backs up Mrs Allen's viewpoint that the tunnel network is extensive.

She has previously said it could stretch as far as the Lawns and even to Coate Water three miles away.

If you can shed more light on Old Town's mysterious tunnel system call the newsdesk on 01793 501802 or email the Adver.