Northern Ireland is selling a heavily fortified secret nuclear bunker that dates back to the latter stages of the Cold War. If you have a spare half a million pounds or so, you could be the owner of the nuclear fallout shelter – never used, excellent condition. Construction began in 1987 and it was completed in 1990, just after the fall of the Berlin Wall when the Soviet Union was beginning to dissolve. Its existence was a state secret until 2007.

The discreet facility is buried within a mound of earth on an anonymous industrial estate on the outskirts of Ballymena, County Antrim. Protected by three air-tight blast doors and one-metre-thick concrete walls, the shelter contains dormitories, kitchen facilities, an emergency BBC broadcast studio and decontamination chambers. In the event of a nuclear attack, the shelter could house 235 VIPs and support staff for 30 days. The unusual property is on sale for around £575,000. Potential buyers might like to know that it comes with all original fixtures and fittings, including tins of long-life processed food. Here, IBTimes UK takes you on a guided tour of the bunker.

Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
'For Sale' sign outside the nuclear bunker on the outskirts of BallymenaPaul Faith/AFP
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The entrance to the former Regional Government HQ Nuclear bunker, built by the British government during the Cold War, on the outskirts of BallymenaClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The main entrance and blast door of the nuclear bunkerCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The main blast door is closed from the inside of the nuclear bunkerCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A map on a wall in a lounge areaClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The main conference roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The main power generator, required to sustain human life once the bunker is sealedCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Control panels in the generator roomClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A crate containing radioactive survey meters (radiation detectors)Charles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The main communications roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A broken clock hanging on the wall of the main communications roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Emergency BBC broadcasting studioCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A folder and control panel in the emergency BBC broadcasting studioClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Old recordable mediaClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A computer and storage media in the operations roomClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
An artificial tree at the bottom of a stairwellCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A radioactivity warning sign on a door to the decontamination roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A man climbing up the escape ladder in a decontamination shower areaPaul Faith/AFP
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The shower in the decontamination roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
NoNorthern Ireland nuclear bunker
A shower tap in the decontamination roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The water-filtration roomClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A cot in the sick bayClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
One of the women's dormitory roomsCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The kitchen area inside the nuclear bunkerPaul Faith/AFP
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Cans and packets of food on a kitchen worktopCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Tins of long-life processed food, including dried skimmed milkClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Tins of margarine, processed cheese and steak & kidney puddingPaul Faith/AFP
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Tea-making facilities in the kitchenClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The men's toilets in the nuclear bunkerCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The control centre for all doors in the bunkerClodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
Key switches in the main power control roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The police roomCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
An emergency telephone and the main switch to close the blast doorsCharles McQuillan/Getty
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A bank of telephones at the main entrance areaPaul Faith/AFP
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
The thick blast doors at the main entrance to the nuclear bunkerPaul Faith/AFP
Northern Ireland nuclear bunker
A CCTV camera feeds a live view of the outside world back into the bunkerCharles McQuillan/Getty

Andrew Fraser, of Lambert Smith Hampton estate agents, said the unusual property could be used as a museum or secure storage facility – or for its original purpose. It could also be turned into a home.