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Tunnels under Alton

Over the years I have heard and read about the tunnels running under the village of Alton. I have had it confirmed that they link the public houses giving access via their cellars so you can understand the locals not being willing to divulge anything. Following a problem with water failing to drain away from the church next to the castle some years ago, workmen were called in and shown the entrance to the tunnel below. This access can still be found by going to the side of the church where there are two old toilets jutting out from the cliff face. There is a set of steps leading down to a door, probably now covered with undergrowth. This information got out to the news media and it was suggested to open the tunnels to the general public. That idea was very quickly squashed as there have been a number of collapses making them dangerous. One piece of information I gleaned from a visit to the Malt House was the suggestion that the tunnels radiated out from there to deliver the malt to the various pubs. This underhand (underground) system was  to avoid the roads where the delivery vehicles could be seen and thereby taxed. I have also heard that the tunnels were used during the second world war. Does anyone have any further information like when they were originally built? Does it have anything to do with the number of Masons that are buried in the grave yard next to the church?