Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
WildBoyz

UK Newburn Culvert, Newburn - February 2016

Recommended Posts

History
 

Newburn Culvert, located underneath a block of flats known as Spencer Court, was originally built on land owned by the Duke of Northumbria sometime in the mid-1800s. The culvert was a traditional brick Victorian structure. On the 17th May 2012, after heavy rainfall, a large 6 metre wide hole appeared in Millfield Lane, in Newburn. Teams were immediately deployed to uncover why a hollow had appeared. After initial examinations of the area had been conducted, an old privately owned culvert was discovered. A few days later, on 20th May, a number of pumps were installed, to reduce the water level in around ‘The Winnings’ (a small valley that can be found further upstream).
 

Although immediate repair work was set in motion, extremely bad weather throughout the summer months, especially on 28th June when a severe storm occurred. A few weeks earlier the pumps that had been installed were already becoming overwhelmed by the amount of water accumulating in the valley. A number of houses in the area, including Spencer Court and several cars, were subsequently flooded during the early hours on 10th June. The next day the flats were evacuated by the police, as they were identified as being ‘high risk’. Eighteen days later, the citywide storm hit Newcastle. Though more pumps had been set up, the water in ‘The Winnings’ soon broke its banks, resulting in the flooding of Spencer Court once again; this time up to the second floor. Over 50mm of rain fell within a two hour period; the Environment Agency reported that it was the largest storm Newcastle had experienced since the 1900s. In anticipation that a major storm was heading towards the city, a number of sandbags had been deployed, prior to the incident. Although they did prevent more serious damage from occurring, a further nine properties within the area were evacuated on a precautionary basis. Once again the police assisted in the withdrawal of residents.
 

Following another period of heavy rainfall on 25th September 2012, all of the remaining blocks of Spencer Court were successfully evacuated. Floodwater managed to hollow out the ground beneath a number of the flats, severely damaging the foundations and exposing a number of supporting pillars. Newburn High Street was also closed in the wake of another lower culvert breach. According to ‘the extreme events scrutiny review’, what initially seemed like a reasonably straightforward task soon escalated into a major incident. There were disruptions to the electrical supply in the surrounding area, damage to a major water and gas mains and, as is well known, Spencer Court was partially demolished. When it was discovered that six inches of subsidence had taken place within many of the flats engineers agreed that the some of the premises should be dismantled.
 

After the downpours approximately forty million litres (8.7 million gallons) of water was pumped out of the area. Teams were forced to work twenty four hours a day to rectify the situation and carry out the necessary repairs to the heavily damaged culvert. Over 140 tonnes of ‘high-tec grout’ was used to stabilise the ground above and around the culvert. Following this an estimated three hundred tonnes of displaced soil was excavated and a new concrete section of culvert was promptly installed. A further 125 metre concrete structure was also built over the non-collapsed section of the culvert that is located on Northumberland Estate land. According to the ‘extreme events scrutiny report’, in cases such as this, where public property is damaged and unstable, people are generally not permitted to return to collect valuables and personal belongings. In this instance, however, the council granted access to the site, so people were able to retrieve some of their possessions before the buildings were razed. Throughout the whole disaster neither Northumberland Estates, or Dunelm Homes, admitted responsibility for the collapse, although the Duke of Northumberland is reported to have paid more than £10 million to help repair the culvert and provide support to those who lost their homes. 
 

Our Version of Events
 

Newburn culvert has always been something we wanted to see, but up until now we’d never managed to get it done completely. Anyway, a few years on from the disaster and things have changed considerably in this area; half of Spencer Court is gone and the culvert has had lots of new concrete added to it. Since the storms are long gone now, we decided to finally get down there and take a look. This report, then, is made up from photographs from a few different visits.
 

As we first approached the culvert, it looked like an ordinary, classic, culvert… boring. The bridge at the beginning wasn’t too bad, but it looked as though we were about to encounter a lot of concrete. Nevertheless, we’d spent five minutes getting here so we decided to persevere and have a look inside anyway. As we first entered the water reached about knee depth because it was silty as fuck; before we’d taken our first few steps it hadn’t looked too bad. Much to our surprise we were met by a number of large pipes, so we had a bit of ducking and diving to do pretty much straight away. Inside this section it was obvious that many parts of the culvert have been reinforced, although there was a fair bit of debris covering the floor.
 

Further on, it was clear that some parts of the brick floor had sunk, which made the whole thing a bit uneven to walk on. The water was fast flowing at this point, but was beginning to get much shallower. The brickwork in this section was good, a classic Victorian type of structure, so we spent a while trying to take photographs here. Finished trying to capture the brickwork, after a bit more walking, we were suddenly overwhelmed by the sound of running water. It had been getting louder and louder up to this point, but we hadn’t expected to turn a corner and find such a large waterfall; not under Newcastle at any rate. Stood at the base of it, you could barely hear yourself think, it was almost impossible to hear anything.


Climbing the waterfall was a wet experience, as you might imagine, and a bit of a tricky task in waders. After a bit of slipping and sliding, we found ourselves inside a new corrugated metal tube which felt quite big. It almost felt like a slipway rather than a culvert since the water was so shallow, but it ended after 20 metres or so. Next, we reached the section that had collapsed back in 2012. Concrete galore! Boring as fuck… A large concrete inspection chamber greeted us a few minutes later though, and it was immaculately clean. There wasn’t a single piece of rubbish or dirt in here which was quite amazing to see. From the chamber, up the end of the culvert, it was basically the same type of structure throughout, until we reached the inflow and a large metal box grill.
 

Explored with Ford Mayhem and Husky.
 

1:

aDSC_0255_zpsynmteq02.jpg
 

2:

aDSC_0250_zpsmxlpwhis.jpg
 

3:

aDSC_0244_zpsyiavuvhi.jpg
 

4:

aDSC_0236_zpsyiaqrcur.jpg
 

5:

aDSC_0225_zpscdbxgycp.jpg
 

6:

aDSC_0232_zps6bh3fbkj.jpg
 

7:

aDSC_0217_zps2sscvwbk.jpg
 

8:

aDSC_0211_zpse4ighf2g.jpg
 

9:

aDSC_0214_zpszfnjfg2f.jpg
 

10:

aDSC_0213_zpsvraicoad.jpg
 

11:

aDSC_0192-2_zpszmer9nhf.jpg
 

12:

aDSC_0208_zps0qmqqykl.jpg
 

13:

aDSC_0187_zpsivye6t2s.jpg
 

14:

aDSC_0182-2_zpsuhgfyhet.jpg
 

15:

aDSC_0168_zpsa2esh9bd.jpg
 

16:

aDSC_0172_zpsyk9tfamx.jpg
 

17:

aDSC_0176-2_zpseaolbv8b.jpg
 

18:

aDSC_0174_zpsvihonflt.jpg

 

19:

aDSC_0170_zpshexzyipb.jpg
 

20:

aDSC_0180_zpsgpm4sq4s.jpg
 

21:

aDSC_0181-2_zpstsvr8tuv.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

  • Similar Content

    • By Maniac
      As part of the 'stop talking about doing stuff, and actually go and do it' initiative, I Visited this place with DesertionPhotography.
      Atkinson Morley Hospital was established on its present site in 1869 and closed in 2003. It was noteable as being the first place in the UK to have a CT scanner installed in 1972, however that scanner is not one of the one's you can see there today; they are much more modern. In its day, Atkinson Morely was one of the most advanced brain surgery centres in the world.
      Interesting explore this one, as some of the place is quite trashed then other areas just round the corner are still mint.
      1. Your basic generic hospital corridor

      2.

      3.

      4.

      5. Operating theatre control board

      6. CT Scanner number 1.

      7. And control room for it.

      8. Buttons

      9.Little bit of kit left in the X-Ray room.

      10. X-Ray developing department (I think)

      11. CT Scanner number 2

      12.

      13. And control room

      14. Chapel, later used as a lecture theatre. Note security are using this for storing their boarding, tools and stepladders - they are based very close to this room.

      15. The wards are stripped bare.

      Thanks for looking!
      Maniac
    • By Maniac
      Might as well stick these up. Leybourne grange is a shadow of it's former self, actually to be blunt it's f**ked. There's still however a few bits and pieces to be seen. The Manor house is in a much worse state than I thought, and I think it's days are numbered, as with the rest of the complex it's just been left to decay.
      Just had a poke around he biggest accomodation block, and the manor house. There's a lot of the other villas still on site, but it didn't seem worth the effort to get inside them.
      1.

      2.

      3.

      4.

      5.

      6. Staircase is about the only part of the main building worth photographing. The rest is a soggy mess of rotton wood, and it smells baaaad!

      7. In the basement areas

      8.

      9.

      10.

      Thanks for Looking!
      M
    • By Maniac
      I wasn't going to bother with a report, but I think I had just about enough photos to make it worthwhile, so may as well. Being very bored at the weekend, myself, Frosty and Obscurity decided to take ourselves off here to have a looksie. It was also the first exploring outing of the new car, the first of many I'm sure!
      Our visit to this place was cut short by Mr security guard together with dog handler and badly trained dog, and a visit from the police who were very professional and just let us on our way. Becasue of this minor setback we only got to see inside the big main hospital building and didn't get to see the mortuary or other parts of the complex like we were hoping. However Harold Wood is more than a mortuary (even if the rest of it is quite knackered.)
      Harold wood hospital closed its doors in 2006, and plans were submitted for housing. As far as I can work out these plans are being objected to by local residents resulting in a long drawn out process and leaving the site in limbo at the moment.
      This place is used by Air Soft players, there were thousands of pellets everywhere inside the place, and players on another part of the site when we were in the building. It's a good job we exited that building when we did, as it was their next playing area and that could have hurt lots!
      We managed precisely one building before being busted, although it is the biggest one it is the least interesting.
      Anyway, have some pics!
      1. Outside

      2. Operating Theatres

      3.

      4. Corridors etc.

      5.

      6.

      7.

      8.

      9. There are some bits and pieces left.

      10.

      11.

      12.

      13.

      14.

      15. Mint Bathroom

      16. Very Pink.

      thanks for looking!
      Maniac.
    • By Maniac
      The Margate caves are situated at one end of Northdown Road in Margate, and run for a reasonable distance underneath the site of a one time vicarage and church, both of which were destroyed in WWII - and the site is now a car park. Origenally they are thought to have started out as a denehole, but have had many uses in their past including a prison with dungeons that can be seen today, a secret place of workship buring times of religious persecution, and as a hideout and storage for smugglers with passeges to and from the sea.
      The caves fell out of use at some point and got forgotten about until somewhere near the end of the 18th Century, a man named Francais Forster built a large house called Northumberland House, and around 1798 his gardener re-discovered the caves by accidently digging into them. A private entrance into the caves was made, and it was during this time that most of the murals and paintings you can see in the caves today were created. According to local history, the paintings were all done by a local artist named Brazier, who unfortunitely destroyed many interesting aspects of the caves contruction when the walls were smoothed over to create a surface for his work.
      In 1914 a new entrance was cut from the cellar of the vicarage, which is the entrance that is still used today. In the making of this entrance, one of the murals (The Thanet Hunt) was destroyed.
      The Caves were opened as a tourist attraction, but were eventually closed to the public in 2003 amid 'safety concerns' and the council has put forward plans to have them filled in and housing built on the land above on more than one occassion. Each time it's been blocked and thus they now sit there today doing nothing. (Quite honestly there's nothing unsafe about them they just need cleaning up a bit, but of course caves don't really make councils any money, but land for housing does! )
      There have been proposals recently to re-open the caves as part of the Margate Regenration scheme, but as far as I know at the moment no real progress has been made on this.
      Explored with Fortknox0, Obscurity, Frosty, Gizmo and Townie.







      Thank for Looking!
      Maniac.
    • By Maniac
      I wanted to go here more for personal reasons than anything else. My mum grew up in Chelmsford, and she and her mum and a lot of their friends all worked for Marconi at different times.
      Well what can I say it sure is a mess - pikeys and graffiti artists have been at play here. Having said that if you move away from the factory floor areas and into the other areas, it's not actually too bad. It's totally stripped, hardly anything to show what it's purpose was which is a shame.
      Also it's huge - it really is a pretty big site, you don't realise until you're inside. There must be 4 very large factory floors, with several other large spaces as well as a 5 story high admin block, which although very samey does get better as you go higher. Then there's the very oldest part right at the front.
      Visited on the spur of the moment with Obscurity and his misses - cheers for a good day people

      It has to be said, this bit's pretty bland


      Amazingly all the glass is intact, but the ceilings trashed.

      Old meets new


      There's a few bits left


      I love the roof of this building.



      Reception area was pretty good, shame it's no where near as neat as it was in earlier reports, but it could be worse.





      The main lobby of the oldest part.



      Although it was trashed in parts, I thought it was a pretty good - it would have been fantastic to have seen it in it's prime.
      Maniac.


Disclaimer

Oblivion State exists as an online forum to allow like minded individuals to share their experiences of Urban Exploration. We do not condone breaking and entering or other criminal activity and advise all members to read the FAQ articles about the forum and urban exploring in general. All posts are the responsibility of the original poster and all images remain copyright to the original photographer.

We would just like to thank

Forum user AndyK! from Behind Closed Doors for our rather excellent new logo.

All of our fantastic team of Moderators who volunteer their time to keep this place running smoothly.

All of our members for continuing to support Oblivion State by posting up the most awesome content. Thank you everyone!
×