History- The building is from the 'railway era'. The hotel was a hub of the community, it had a fantastic ballroom and restaurant. Many people came by rail to stay at Sutton Bridge.
The hotel from around 2000 was used by an employment agency called StaffSmart to house workers they had lured over to the UK from South Africa to work in the local canning factory. People came from SA on the promise of hotel accommodation and didn't know until they got here that it meant inside the shell of the Bridge Hotel on damp mattresses lined up in each room, including the Ballroom. After StaffSmart vacated the hotel, it stood empty with broken windows until it was bought and restored to a high standard with plush furnishings and chandeliers. However, the hotel rooms were pricey and without the rail trade of people heading to the village, people would be passing through and tended to stay in cheaper accommodation in the area. The hotel wasn't open for long before closing down and ownership passed through several hands whilst falling further into disrepair.
In 2015, workmen were spotted on the site removing roof tiles and floorboards to salvage as many building materials before it was demolished but its still standing now, so I don't know what stopped the demolition. Since then the building has unfortunately been vandalised and several fires have been set destroying about 70% of it.
The Bridge Hotel in the 50's
Explore- The hotel is close to me, so even though I knew the damage of the place it was still worth checking out. Access to the building was easy, a window round back was broken and a board to climb up to it was balanced kind of safely. The cellar floor, ground floor and a few rooms on the first floor were safe enough to walk around but past that there is a lot of fire damage.
This one required an early start, but the morning adventure to The Kings Hall was worth the effort. Visited with Zombizza.
"Located in Southall, Middlesex, in the west of Greater London. The King’s Hall was built in 1916 and was designed by architect Sir Alfred Gelder of Hull. The King’s Hall building has a 3-storey red brick and stone facade. It was operated by the Uxbridge and Southall Wesleyan Mission and it was soon screening religious films.
By 1926, it was operating as a regular cinema, still managed by the Methodist church.
The King’s Hall Cinema was closed in 1937. It then reverted back to a Methodist Church use as the King’s Hall Methodist Church. They vacated the building in January 2013"
Started nice and early, and managed our entrance fairly incident free...if we don't count the massive tear in my trousers..
It's a pretty spectacular place with a wonderful blend of natural decay and marvelous original features/architecture. With little to no daylight, we decided to wonder round the back rooms while the sun came up before the spending too much time on the main attraction, the large auditorium.
The rooms around the back are a weird mix of new and old, some of them being more disgusting than others. One room was so pungent that I took 2 steps in before bailing out.
There was also one room that was filled with beds, old food packets and needles. Looked a few years old, but squatters for sure.
The larger rooms consisted of meeting rooms, prayer rooms and teaching rooms. All of them had funky wavy flooring where the wooden floor tiles had expanded with moisture.
Eventually the sun came up and the auditorium started to flood with the golden morning light.
After a few hours we left, although the exit was hilariously unsubtle.
Not the most inspiring of places, but it's quite remarkable because of how quickly it got trashed. It closed in june that year, and by ocotber it was royally trashed. It's now been flattened and the land is still for sale.
The weird thing about this place was remembering it from when I was a kid, was sad seeing it so trashed.
Location - BAE Systems, Rochester, Kent
Date Visted: February 2008
Curent Status: Has now been demolished
Future Plans: Redevelopment.
BAE systems Rochester was primerily involved in the manufacture of Electronics and Integrated solutions. The buildings form part of Rochester Airport, and were used by an RAF flying school and the Shorts Brothers prior to being used by BAE systems.
The older part of the complex dates from the 1930's and was probably built when No 23 Elementary and Reserve Flying Training School took over use of the site in 1938. The newer part was probably built in when GEC (comprising Marconi and instrument makers Elliot Automation) took over use of the site in 1979. BAE aquired both of these companies in the following years, and continued operations a Rochester until the site was vacated in 2004.
Rochester airport itself is now run on a care and maintenance basis by a group of entusiasts, who are currently negotiating with Medway council over a long term lease for the site. The buildings ajoining Maidstone Road are the ones we visted; they are currently being demolished and the land is set for redevelopment. As you can see there's not a lot left, but it was still interesting to look round none the less.
If you have an electric panel fetish, then this is the place for you.
Thanks for looking
Location - Crest Packaging, Gillingham
Date Visited - January 2008
Present Status - Demolition in progress
Future Plans - Proposed Distribution Centre
Crest packaging was origenally known as Bowaters packaging. The origenal factory and admin block were built in the late 50's/early 60's, the factories primary purpose was the manufacture of flexible packaging primerily for the food industry. Bowaters packaging was brought out by the Crest group in 1985, and the factory traded as Crest packaging from then until it closed in 2003 following the collapse of the Crest group, leaving opver 200 people out of work.
The site has now been demolished and rhumor has it a large distribution centre is due to be built there.
There's not a great deal to show what the place did, as all assets were sold off when the company collapsed, however it was still a good explore and there were lots of interesting bits in the admin block.
Enjoy the photos, and I apologise for the quality as they were taken on a very old fujifilm camera.
Factory Floor, Completely stripped bare
Bridge linking factory to Admin block. Apologies for poor photo, handheld shot on an old camera.
Missing government data
Obligatory phone shot
The admin block is set out over 4 floors, mostly empty boring offices, until you get to the basement levels.
Amazing walk in safe
Safe within the walk in safe. You could say it was a safe safe.
Store room, I think they stored samples of all their packaging in the woodern draws, as there was some still in them
Really old franking machine. I wish I'd saved this, it was an amazing piece of engineering.
Up in the roof space. Lift motor.
1950's origenal lift controller
I'm the king of the world!!
Kinda had to be done
One last one, looking at the factory from thr roof of the admin block.
Unfortunitely this place is now rubble, but it was a pretty decent explore while it was standing.
Thanks for looking