(above: Bernauer Straße as the border between the French and Soviet sectors of Berlin 1in 1955, six years before the building of the Berlin Wall. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-33809-0001 / Quaschinsky, Hans-Günter / CC-BY-SA)
Mike is at it again, as he takes Circus guests north to Bernauer Straße this Wednesday for his Berlin Wall Tour. Bernauer Straße divides the neighbourhoods of Berlin Mitte and Wedding, and thus became the border between East and West Berlin during the years of division. It was here that some of the most dramatic scenes of August 1961 played out, as the wall was built and people desparately tried to make their escape. A number of escape tunnels also crossed beneath the Bernauer Straße, and it was also home to the Church of Reconciliation, which found itself stranded in the death strip of the Berlin Wall until it was eventually destroyed in the 1980s by the East German regime.
A Chapel of Reconciliation has since been erected on the site of the original church, and it makes up part of a long strip of historical sites and the Berlin Wall Memorial, which Mike will take you to on the tour. There will also be the chance to visit the Documentation Centre on Bernauer Straße, and Mike has lots of different stories to tell you along the way, so it is a must for anyone who is interested in the division of the city. The tour is exclusive to guests of The Circus, and is completely free, although places are limited so if you are interested make sure you sign up at reception.
Mike’s Berlin Wall Memorial Tour – Wednesday 31st July, 1.30pm.