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  1. The Explore So I'd heard rumours of this abandoned tube train somewhere in the Peak District for a while and a very friendly chap then gave me some invaluable pointers and managed to find it! What a strange thing to find in the middle of the peaks! Apparent they used to test explosions inside the carriages, contained inside a huge steel tube to replicate a real tunnel The History The HSL site at Harpur Hill is a massive 222 ha. This vast area is essential because of the sheer scale and nature of its testing work that has included, for example, full-size tunnels where disasters such as the King’s Cross fire can be recreated, Europe’s largest impact test track for crash testing trains, and replicating some of the more bizarre accidents such as heating up shipping containers packed with fireworks until they explode. In addition to the actual testing, HSL also has to store all the evidence it collects during an investigation. Funded under the Government’s Private Finance Initiative (PFI), construction work began at the site in July 2002 on the 22,000m2 development that was built by a consortium, Investors in the Community (Buxton) Ltd (ICB). The £56m project provides scientific and engineering laboratories, engineering workshops, offices, meeting rooms, library and other supporting facilities. Inside the huge steel tube that contained explosions etc