CS, RD and Hood_Mad had been the week before and I'd been badgering Hood all week to go and he finally succumbed. On this explore was Hood_mad, Bone_mad and myself.
We first went to see 8X7, which is a fantastic experience, we followed the tunnel, past some spectacular collapses (deliberate???) right to the end to where the tunnel has been concreted shut, if you're really quiet here, you can hear running water below your feet.
All the way along the tunnels, there are these fantastic stalagmites and stalactites,
Most of the side tunnels have (been) collapsed and the concrete roof has fallen down blocking the entrances, there are two open ones near the beginning of 8X7 but they don't look far off collapsing.
All around the place, there are pieces of the steel supporting hoops which are about 1" thick girders that supported the roof structure, these have been broken (blown) into pieces by some force. The edges are slightly molten.
Everywhere we went, Bone_mad was there, she was exploring every nook and cranny, loving every minute. No puddle was too deep, no wall too high.
We then moved onto 8X6, which had a smaller entrance, we had to get a picture of the fake appendage mentioned in the other threads, CS, look away now or you'll have nightmares!!
Scattered around the place were these fantastic heavy duty lamps.
And the switchwork.
We were very hesitant about going right to the bottom of this tunnel as there were significant collapses of the side walls and of the link tunnels, but as always, a bit of taunting put our balls in the right place and we (very quietly) made our way to the far end. Nothing makes you place your feet carefully as the threat of imminent collapse.
At the end of this tunnel, there is a lot of running water passing below your feet, it is quite loud. We obviously didn't spend long down here, but on the way back, we spotted this set of rollers that would have been along the tunnel for pushing boxes down.
We made our way a bit further up the tunnel and spotted a ladder going up one of the collapsed side tunnel roofs.
I squeezed my way up and on top of the tunnel, either side of the entrance was a ladder that went down between the double skins.
There was enough headroom for me to crouch and walk all the way along the top of the tunnel to the other side which was the right-hand tunnel of 8X6. I saw significant collapses on this side and was not about to venture there.
We made our way out of the tunnel through the gap.
We had a quick peek in 8X5 as I wanted to go see the other bunkers.
We walked up to the north west one (scared the life out of some teenage dopeheads) and had a look around.
Past some guard huts.
Then to the middle (secured) one.
The old alarm system.
The new alarm system.
In all the excitement, I forgot to take a full photo of this one, we walked all the way over the top of it, there is definately no other way in, lol.
It was getting dark by now so we made our way home.
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
5. Operating theatre control board
6. CT Scanner number 1.
7. And control room for it.
9.Little bit of kit left in the X-Ray room.
10. X-Ray developing department (I think)
11. CT Scanner number 2
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!
This place really should have been looked at a long time ago, the history behind the place is literally insane. Thanks to zombizza for putting the lead up, it was still just about worth a look inside although practically everything has been stripped already. I went inside with workers present which made it a fairly tense explore, lots of patiently hiding around corners and sneaking around expecting to get seen at any moment, eventually that moment came and I had to scarper quick sharp. I decided to go back at night and finish off seeing the place assuming there would be nobody present. Surprisingly this turned out to be an impossible mission due to previously unlocked doors being locked and an annoyingly active pair of torch waving security guards with way too much energy. During the day was better. Onto the lengthy history, take a deep breath, there's a lot to read if you can be arsed.
Originally known as the Middlesex County Asylum, this was the first pauper lunatic asylum built in England following the Madhouse Act of 1828, which allowed the building of purpose-built asylums. It went on to become the largest asylum in the world at it's peak.
When it opened in 1831 the Asylum accommodated up to only 300 patients. The building was enlarged in November of the same year and by 1841 90 staff were looking after 1302 patients. Extensions were added in 1879 and by 1888 there were 1891 patients and the Asylum had become the largest in Europe. Patients were looked after by members of their own sex and there were two gatehouses at the entrance - one for males and one for females.
It achieved great prominence in the field of psychiatric care because of two people, Dr William Ellis and Dr John Connolly. Dr (later Sir) William Ellis encouraged patients to use their skills and trades in the Asylum. This 'therapy of employment' benefitted both the Asylum and the patients themselves and was a precursor to occupational therapy. Dr John Conolly became Medical Superintendent in 1839. He abolished mechanical restraints to control patients. This was a great success and encouraged other asylums also to do so. Padded cells, solitary confinement and sedatives were used instead.
The extensive grounds were cultivated for produce. The Asylum became self-sufficient, with a farm, a laundry, a bakery and a brewery. Local artisans - tailors, shoemakers - worked at the asylum. There was a gasworks and a fire brigade and even a burial ground for those patients whose relatives had not claimed their bodies. Water was taken from the nearby Grand Union Canal and the Asylum had its own dock for barges delivering coal and for taking away produce for sale.
Several name changes took place over the years. In 1889 the Asylum was renamed the London County Asylum, Hanwell. In 1918 it became known as the London County Mental Hospital. In 1929 it was renamed Hanwell Mental Hospital. In 1937 its name changed again, to St Bernard's Hospital, Southall.
During WW2 the Emergency Medical Services commandeered one ward for war casualties. The Hospital and grounds received some bomb damage and later the laundry was destroyed by a V1 flying bomb, which caused many casualties. A gatehouse was also damaged. It joined the NHS in 1948 as part of the North West Metropolitan Region, with its own Hospital Management Committee.
By the 1960s the Hospital in its 74 acre site held 2200 patients.
St Bernard's Hospital was merged with the adjacent Ealing Hospital in 1980 and became the Psychiatric Unit. It was then known as the St Bernard's Wing of the Ealing Hospital. By this time it had 950 beds for psychiatric and psychogeriatric patients. In 1992 the Ealing Hospital General Unit and Maternity Unit split off to form a new Trust and the St Bernard's Wing regained its previous name of St Bernard's Hospital. The Hospital underwent a major refurbishment in 1998. The exterior of the buildings still in use were cleaned, revealing the yellow colouring of the bricks.
Scenes from Porridge were filmed in the courtyard here and also scenes from the 1989 Batman movie with Jack Nicholson.
Much of the site has been demolished already, and other parts converted into flats. The current hospital has decided that the asylum buildings can no longer be refurbished in such a way as to support a modern hospital so the remainder of the asylum buildings are being refurbished for private housing. The extensive modern buildings at the back (canal-side) of the hospital will remain in use and will be supplemented by further new buildings away from the historical asylum.
I didn't know it at the time but the screws on my wide angle were completely loose so the majority of my shots were out of focus unfortunately. These are the shots that came out good enough.
1. How the exterior of all the buildings looked....
3. I spotted this stuck onto the skirting board in a corridor, I assume this was the adolescents ward...
4. Most rooms had cartoon characters painted on the walls in here
7. Not sure what this old hall might have been used for
9. At this point the place became a little more interesting, this was the busiest area of work so I didn't hang about long
13. The last few shots were all taken on the top floor
14. The ceiling in here was one of the only remaining features left
EDIT: July 2017 revisit ....
19. Chapel and Hall, the only two buildings that haven't been converted yet. The chapel was locked and appears to be in use as a site office.
20. Large backstage area behind the hall, difficult to capture the size of it due to the scaffolding and temporary flooring above.
21. Some glimpses of former grandeur with these columns.
23. Temporary flooring below the ceiling
26. The Hall, amazingly still untouched despite the remainder of the buildings being completely stripped or converted.
Thanks for looking
Lombard Street is reputed to be one of London’s streets that is steeped in seven hundred years of banking history. It began life in the Roman times of Londinium as a wealthy city road. It later became a notable banking street on account of several Jewish goldsmith occupants sometime during the Norman conquest. However, the street did not acquire its name until Italian goldsmiths, the Longobards from Lombardy, were granted the land during the reign of Edward I. The badge of the Medici family, the three golden pills, was first displayed here, and since then it has remained as a traditional sign of the pawnbroker.
It is reported that most of the large present day UK banks share history with Lombard Street. For instance, Lloyd’s of London, an insurance market now located in London’s primary financial district, began as Lloyds coffee House in 1691. From around this time, most banks established their headquarters on Lombard Street. Many remained there right up until the 1980s; the decade that signalled the end of ‘runners’ donning top hats to deliver bills of exchange to the Bank of England. Number 60., which is the rooftop this report is based on, was occupied by T.S.B for many years and it was the last bank to move its headquarters out of the street. T.S.B have assured people that their legacy will continue to be an important part of the street and that their colourful sign hanging from the front façade will be a tribute to this.
On the topic of signage, Lombard Street is said to be famous for being one of the few places in London where 17th and 18th century-styled shop signs still survive, jutting from buildings on wrought-iron brackets. However, it is said that some lateral thinking is required to decipher what the old signs signify: Adam and Eve meant fruiterer; a bugle’s horn, a post office; a unicorn, an apothecary’s; a spotted cat, a perfumer’s. Many of those that remain today were the emblems of rich families and Edwardian reconstructions of early goldsmiths’ signs. It is well-known that many early 20th century banks, such as Barclays with their eagle and Lloyds with their horse, re-appropriated some of these signs as company logos. It is important to note, though, that they all chose to adopt lifeless signs as their logos, as opposed to ‘breathing signs’ (cats in baskets, rats and parrots in cages, vultures tethered to wine shacks etc.), which were very fashionable at one time.
Finally, another interesting fact about Lombard Street, but one that is completely unrelated to banking, is that it is where the first love of Charles Dickens lived. The girl’s name was Maria Beadnell, and she was the daughter of a bank manager. It is said that Dickens would often walk down Lombard Street in the early hours of the morning to gaze upon the place where she slept. By today’s standard that certainly would not be considered a romantic gesture – Dickens may well have landed himself in a spot of bother if he tried peeping through girl’s windows in this day and age.
Our Version of Events
Despite havinghigh aspirations for the night,all of them failed. So, we were heading back to the car to call it a night when we noticed some scaffolding thatlooked ‘a bit bait’ as the locals might put it. It involved a bit of a climbing and there was no way of avoiding any onlookers from seeing us. But, since we were very desperate for a rooftop at this point, we decided to have a crack at it anyway.
In the end, and contrary to all appearances, getting onto the roof of 60 Lombard Street was easy, and it wasn’t long before we were ascending the last bit of scaff to get up to the highest point on the roof. One by one we gathered in a small sheltered space, waiting for everyone to catch up before we climbed the last ladder that took us up to the highest point. But, it was at that moment we noticed that there were suddenly a lot more people around than what we’d first started out with. As it turned out, another couple of lads had decided to have a crack at the bank rooftop too. It seemed that they were just as surprised to discover us lurking about up there. At first we had thought it might some over-zealous security guards on the verge of losing their jobs if they didn’t catch us, but thankfully we were wrong.
Fortunately, there was enough space up top for all of us to congregate. Since it was pretty chilly, though, we wasted no time setting up the cameras to grab a few shots. As always, the views of London were spectacular. Sadly, however, all the buildings we had wanted to get on top of were the ones surrounding us, taunting us from every direction – and they looked even more enticing from where we were standing.
Explored with Ford Mayhem, Slayaaaa and Stewie.
The Stratford Riverside (an apartment block) is a ‘prestigious’ new riverside development situated on the Waterworks River, near the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Once fully completed the project will be 29 storeys high and it will have a ‘striking’ glass façade. The building, which features balconies/terraces in every one of its 201 apartments, will offer residents fantastic views of London’s skyline, where it is possible to view the financial powerhouses of the British economy to the west, and the modern towers of Canary Warf to the south. Alternatively, people can also use the expansive roof garden on the 7th floor to gaze out at the city. Additional features of the development include a resident’s only gymnasium, a hotel-styled foyer with concierge and a café/bar. The developers describe the building as a ‘world of luxury’, suggesting that it will quickly become an enviable address in one of London’s fastest growing areas. Stratford itself is said to be a vibrant district of London, which offers everything you need for a ‘superior lifestyle’. For anyone who is interested, prices for a two-bedroom apartment start from £465,000, while three bedroom dwellings start from £680,000.
Our Version of Events
Looking for another night of fun in London, we decided to have a wander around Stratford.We’d noticed some development going on over that way a few evenings earlier, so thought it was worth a look around. After spending a few moments eying up various sites, we finally settled on the Stratford Riverside development; it looked reasonably high, and offered views over the Olympic Stadium.
As always, it took a little time to figure out how to get onsite. Eventually, though, we found a suitable way into the site and ended up inside some sort of bush. As it turned out, this wasn’t the best way inside and Mayhem quickly discovered that the bush wasn’t weight bearing. There was a brief moment it seemed to take his weight, but a second later several large cracks erupted from beneath him and he was sent tumbled downwards. His life flashed before his eyes as he plummeted towards the ground below, and, as he told us later, he could see the bush above him steadily disappear as it grew smaller and smaller, as the distance between it and himself grew larger.
Mayhem landed with a sudden thud, into an enormous pit of thorns. Feeling for his arms, legs and other essential parts, to check everything was where it was supposed to be, he glanced around to see where he was. As he began to come to his senses, he quickly realised that the fall had been a whopping metre. He could see a large hole in the bush above with moonlight pouring through. He was lucky to be alive. Using the light to find a way out, he attempted to crawl out of the pit where there were fewer thorns. A sudden pain shot through his body as he tried to move. Quickly he reached for his arse and it was then that he found a large spikey thorn wedged between his crack. Taking in several deep breathes, he grasped it firmly between both hands it gave it a good yank. A stifled scream escaped his tensed lips as the barbs very nearly extended the diameter of his anus. After breathing a sigh of relief, he managed to crawl his way out of the bush to join the rest of us who were waiting patiently.
Next, we raced over to the buildings just ahead of us. At least most of us raced there; those less fortunate were forced to adopt a cowboy strut with their legs wide enough apart to prevent chafing. A few moments later and we were all gathered as the base of the building. From here we had to do a fair bit of ducking, a little bit of dodging and some diving to get to the top of the Riverside development. Had we been wearing leopard-skin leotards and headbands, we would have looked an 80s aerobics class in full swing.
At the top of the Riverside development we immediately set about taking photographs. The view was pretty good, and once again we could see for miles. Unfortunately, it was blowing an absolute gale up on the rooftop, meaning it was hard to keep the tripods steady. It was brass monkeys up there too, so we didn’t stick around for too long. After facing the blizzards and hurricane force winds that were battering us harder than a granny with a washing bat, it wasn’t long before we were forced to retreat. In the end, we’ve managed to salvage some of the shots, but we were a little disappointed with them overall.
Explored with Ford Mayhem, Slayaaaa and two anonymous individuals.