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Lead or Rumour info - Fleet Building (British Telecom), Shoe Lane, Farringdon London

Discussion in 'Leads, Rumours and News...' started by UrbanDuck, Jun 12, 2014.

  1. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    Fleet Building in Farringdon, London was opened in the 1960s purpose built to house the then Central Telegraph Office staff. It was predominately used as an international telex / switching exchange – acting as a hub for overseas communications.

    In later years it become British Telecom and remained operational until around 2006 and has stood derelict since. It was purchased by Goldman Sachs, who are currently in the process of demolishing to make way for a new European head office.

    It is part of a massive complex sitting in the middle of 4 roads, with the entrance on Shoe Lane in Farringdon.

    This site is quite personal to me, as my late father worked in this building during the 70s-and early 80s. I actually remember going there a few times probably around 5 years old and distinctly recall the banks of exchange desks, cables and switch levers.

    I’ve visited this site twice and have only been able to walk around the outside. The first time I went was pre-demolition and security were super hot – a person in a high-vis jacket on every corner and CCTV. I was challenged just walking around and told not to take photos! The place was locked down solid (from a ground level at least), and although I spotted only 1 potential entry point it would have been very risky.

    On my second visit, demolition preparation was clearly underway – with boards around the site and scaffolding up. I would say entry now is actually much easier – however being a total noob to urbex have not had the guts to attempt (yet).

    As I write I’m not sure how much of the building is left as the last time I went was at the end of April 14. It’s a massive site so is likely to take a while to take apart – and there are other buildings attached to this massive complex potentially untouched as yet.

    I was interested to note in terms of design, some similarities with the BT building in Sheffield -

    I’ve included photos below from both trips, with the second set clearly showing demolition in progress.

    Anyone else had a look round?

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    #1 UrbanDuck, Jun 12, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2014

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  2. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    I used to work just over the road from this place in Gunpowder Square right near Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese! :)

    There were security bods dotted around all the time throughout the day with high viz jackets and walkie talkies even then and that was a couple of years ago. Looks like it is more heavily boarded now than what it used to be as those revolving doors used to be open to the street (but locked). Be awesome if you get in there!

    Always looked an interesting place. I forgot just how big it was aswell!
     
  3. Els

    Els Obsessed with BS7671
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    For a long while a window was left open while the homeless used the place. After various distractions I finally went down with a camera only to find the windows had been boarded the day before :(
     
  4. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    How long ago was that Els?

    I did spot a possible way in, although would have involved some quick climbing as part of a Mission Impossible type execution to avoid secca. The problem is the building sits on 4 public roads, with buildings opposite in full view - included other secca desks of those buildings.

    I did consider if perhaps there was a way to access underground - say through the sewer tunnels, but not really my thing lol!

    Like I said previously, with the scaffolding up - probably much easier now - assuming the building is not all gone yet!!

    PS - Just realised like a numpty I've added a couple of duplicate photos in my original post sorry about that guys.
     
  5. sjw

    sjw Bad Character
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    looks pretty fun to have a run around
     
  6. The Kwan

    The Kwan funksoul Brother
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    Rob you can edit your report up until 6.30pm tonight so you can remove your duplicate images :)
     
  7. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    Have done, thanks for that! Sorry noob alert!
     
  8. Octavious

    Octavious 28DL Full Member
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    looks nice and do-able now all that scaf is up, any updates on how much is left?
     
  9. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    I'm in the area this week so will take a look!
     
  10. Els

    Els Obsessed with BS7671
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    You should be aware there are about 5 or 6 security types hanging around the outside of the building 24/7 eg, they do not watch tv in a hut etc.
     
  11. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    Yes second that, although I've only been around the site during the day I'm not sure what it's like a night. To say it would be an achievement to get in would be an understatement. Secca are very on the ball and even passing details of people walking around between each other on the radio - I know as I was of them and got stopped!
     
  12. Octavious

    Octavious 28DL Full Member
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    Current plans put me in the area some time next week so will have a look, hopefully enough ambient light to avoid having to light up every window / reflective surface on the side with a torch :D
     
  13. Gabe

    Gabe 28DL Regular User
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    I think anything of interest is underneath the building which i can only assume is tucked away very well
     
  14. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    Walked around today, still lots of the building left (in fact most of it) - demolition is happening at the very top levels first. In theory access is easy in terms of climbing but place very well guarded - also PTZ CCTV cameras and pir/motion sensors everywhere.

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  15. Ojay

    Ojay Admin
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    The security here must be reading this thread and waiting in anticipation for someone to head up that scaff :popcorn
     
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