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Found 7 results

  1. The Victoria Arches were a series of arches built in the embankment of the River Irwell in Manchester. They served as business premises, landing stages for Steam packet riverboats, and also as World War II air-raid shelters. They were accessed from wooden staircases which descended from Victoria Street. Regular flooding of the river resulted in the closure of the steam-packet services in the early 20th century, and the arches were used for general storage. In World War II the arches were converted for use as air raid shelters. The arches are now bricked up and inaccessible; the staircases were removed in the latter part of the 20th century. In 1838 the city authorities completed construction of a new embankment along the River Irwell, to support a new road. The arches were built at the same time, and created new industrial space. In 1852 the life-boat Challenger was built and launched from the Arches. In the Victorian era passenger trips along the river Irwell were very popular although it was becoming increasingly polluted. In 1860 the Irwell was described as "almost proverbial for the foulness of its waters; receiving the refuse of cotton factories, coal mines, print works, bleach works, dye works, chemical works, paper works, almost every kind of industry." The Rivers Pollution Prevention Act 1876 was designed to solve this problem, but it was largely ineffective. It did however lay the groundwork for the more draconian legislation which followed Following the opening of the Manchester Ship Canal in 1894, in 1895 at least one landing stage was opened by the Manchester Ship Canal Company, who actively encouraged passenger traffic. The company purchased several steamers, two of which, the Shandon and the Eagle, are known to have used the landing stages. The boats could carry 900 and 1,100 passengers respectively. During the first half of 1897 more than 200,000 passengers were carried on trips around Manchester Docks, with holiday seasons the most popular periods. Competition for passengers was fierce, and there were at least two landing stages, operated by different companies. The ferries would occasionally carry musicians, for passenger entertainment. The stages suffered problems with flooding of the Irwell, and do not appear to have remained in business for long; they were closed in 1906. In Underground Manchester; secrets of the city revealed, author Keith Warrender quotes from the recollections of a Manchester City News writer published in 1923 about the arches (he calls them "Victoria Arches"), sixty years previously; I became acquainted with those arches in the sixties, for my father, a master joiner and builder, had a workshop there. Two approaches thereto were provided, one by a flight of steps near the Cateaton Street side of the old churchyard, and the other at the corner of Victoria Street and Fennel Street. The arches were lofty and spacious, and had previously been used as a copper and iron works, in connection with which was a tall chimney by the cathedral steps. Part of the chimney was damaged by lightning and the upper part was taken down in 1872. I believe the lower part remained until the old buildings at that point were demolished, not many years ago.[9] He continues, quoting another letter from the Manchester Evening News in 1960 which says; At the time I knew it well, 1898, one or two of the arches were used as a battery station by Manchester Electricity Department and two or three others as meter testing and storage departments. Also there was the first testing station for the department where the prototypes of all apparatus used by electricity users in the city were tested. The tunnel was bricked up, about level with the end of Fennel Street. From its gradient it would reach approximately water level at the Irk at the bottom of Hunt's Bank, and the other end would reach street level at St Mary's Gate. The roadway was one cart track wide. The entrance was in Victoria Street alongside the door to a tobacconist's shop near Cathedral Yard During World War II the stages and tunnels surrounding them were converted into air-raid shelters.The conversion, which included additional brick blast walls, took three months at a cost of £10,150 and provided shelter for 1,619 people. The cobbled surfaces shown in some of the pictures on the Manchester City Council website show the same network of tunnels before their conversion to air raid shelters. The land covered by the arches included a street, which led at the west end to a wooden bridge over the River Irk. The old road was covered over in an improvement scheme, which began in 1833. The steps and landing stages have remained closed to the public for many years. In 1935 less elaborate steps were in place, some of which remained until 1971.[14] In photographs taken in 1972, the arches are barred, and some are covered with metal grilles.[15] As of 2009, none of the steps remain, and the original Victorian railings along the embankment have been replaced with a stone wall and new railings. Some old pictures first as the arches used to be .
  2. Access into the arches is always a bit sketchy and this time was no different, once inside there's no real chance of being disturbed (other than from pigeons.) The arches as a location is pretty big but 99% of the population of Manchester are unaware of what lies just below their feet. .
  3. History The land on which the arches now stand, including the River Aire that runs beneath part of the city, was originally occupied by peasant farmers. People had farmed this area as early as the 1086, when the region was known as Loidis in the Celtic Kingdom of Elmet. During these early years, a medieval dam was constructed in the river, to divert water to the manorial corn mill at Swinegate, on the orders of the Lord of the Manor, Ilbert de Lacy whose fortified manor stood on the site that is now occupied by the Scarborough Hotel. The original dam is still visible to this day. Construction of the Victorian Dark Arches began much later in 1866, when most of the small railway groups were merging into larger companies. By this time, Leeds prospered as a result of the woollen industry and the wider industrial revolution occurring across England at the time. In response to this a new station in Leeds city centre was required, so more passengers and goods would be able to move through the city. After the completion of the arches, which used over 18 million bricks, the station was built above, on the surface level. However, despite the completion of something that was indeed awe-inspiring, especially since nothing on this scale had ever been accomplished in this area before, the Chief constable of Leeds at the time, writing in 1892, filed a report requesting an urgent expansion of the police force because the Dark Arches attracted many sorts of idlers, criminals and loose women. Since the arches were constructed with walkways and passages, and a number of small businesses and workshops, not just the waterway, people were able to walk freely beneath the city of Leeds. It was well-known though that people should avoid these areas if they did not want to be beaten or robbed. By the 1990s, the entire development had been cleared of most of its former problems and it was considered and advertised as being Leeds’ ‘best kept secret’. The Granary Wharf shopping centre is located within and around the arches and several other small businesses and restaurants were located there, although a number of these have closed and been redeveloped into car parking spaces. While the Granary Wharf area was in financial decline for a number of years throughout the early 2000s, since 2009 the Wharf has been improved considerably. Our Version of Events It has been a wee while since all of us went off on an exploring trip together, so we decided to pile into a couple of cars and see where the road took us. The first point of call thereafter was Leeds, to visit the Dark Arches we’ve heard so much about. Unfortunately for us, it had been raining a lot in the days leading up to our visit, so when we first arrived to access the underground passages the water depth had surged quite considerably and the flow of the water was pretty dangerous to say the least. We did, however, manage to find a way inside the ‘non-public’ part of the Dark Arches and they were very different to how we first imagined they would be. They were, as we’d been told, ‘awe-inspiring’ and had to some extent a pleasant piratey underworld feel to them, but they were much shorter than we’d anticipated. On a more personal level, I was a little disappointed that we weren’t able to get the waders on to have a deeper gander inside the arches, but, in hindsight, if we had done that I think we would have been swept away by the torrent of water. Although we had considered getting the dinghy out, to raft our way down the river, we decided against it since we didn’t fancy getting caught paddling the open river in broad daylight on our first explore of the trip. Perhaps when winter comes though, a little revisit might be on the cards. Explored with Ford Mayhem, Meek-Kune-Do, Rizla Rider and Husky. 1: 2: 3: 4: 5: 6: 7: 8: 9: 10: 11: 12:
  4. Rainbow Church is a brick built Catholic place of worship in the Netherlands. The entire building is a giant triangular-shaped arch with the brickwork exposed inside. The arch shape is concentrically repeated several times in the altar. The church has now been closed for a few years. Visited a Monkey of the Spiderous variety. 1. Cross on red carpet leading to the altar 2. Cross on carpet 3. Wider view of altar 4. Tall view of altar 5. The altar in the sanctuary 6. Rainbows from which the church takes its name 7. Table to one side of the church 8. View from the top 9. View down the church from the back 10. Staircase 11. A mysterious box 12. Store room
  5. Went back for another look and heres what i got!!
  6. Explored with Raz & a non - member Bit of history to start; In 1864 it was proposed to build "New Station" in Leeds. Construction began in 1866 and the station was completed in 1869. The new station was built on arches which span the River Aire, Neville Street and Swinegate. The building of the station led to the creation of the 'Dark Arches' over Neville Street. Over 18 million bricks were used during their construction, breaking records at the time. Although the arches appear to be part of one single structure, closer inspection reveals that it is a series of independent viaducts two or four tracks wide. The Explore; After generally treking around Leeds looking for more rooftops we decided to have a walk down the Dark Arches and see what we could find, not expecting to be very successful how ever we were in luck! we found an access point, a quick look around and a short climb later we were in a drain Pretty cool explore really and i hope to return soon with waders so we can explore more. i doubt we even scratched the surface! Few more photos If you got this far, thanks for reading
  7. right after being awake for 36 hours having a run in with everyones favorite friends and plan b leaving the four of us caked head to toe in mud soaking wet and ready to call it a night we then get a text from ojay an hour later we find are selves in Victoria arches Manchester ... visited with ojay, obscurity,maniac, wevsky stayed in the car with a four pack kicking himself a big for ojay being tour guide .. a little history .... The Victoria Arches were a series of arches built in the embankment of the River Irwell in Manchester. They served as business premises, landing stages for Steam packet riverboats, and also as World War II air-raid shelters. They were accessed from wooden staircases which descended from Victoria Street. Regular flooding of the river resulted in the closure of the steam-packet services in the early 20th century, and the arches were used for general storage. In World War II the arches were converted for use as air raid shelters.The staircases were removed in the latter part of the 20th century. on with the pics ... Thanks for looking

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