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Report - Wood Bros Flour Mill (Christchurch, New Zealand - July 2013)

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by Dieselkid 63, Oct 16, 2013.

  1. Dieselkid 63

    Dieselkid 63 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    Dec 21, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Hello all.

    After the relatively recent earthquake that decimated most of central Christchurch, there've been quite a few buildings 'red stickered' meaning access is prohibited due to internal damage. Due to NZ have virtually no urbex scene (apart from the infamous go cart track a few years back :p: ), the earthquake has provided a great opportunity to explore some of historic Christchurch. Some of the red stickered buildings you walk in to and your first inclination is to gtfo - they really are on their last legs. Others like Wood Bros seem to be a bit more sturdy, though discovering a major structural collapse at the back of the mill wasn't a pleasant surprise, and some of the floors are literally suspended carpet :eek: On the way back we took a look at the Addington Sale yards. Once a livestock trading hub, this maze is a sorry mess of melted tar roof, crumbling concrete and overgrown mayhem.

    So on for some semi-stolen history. In 1889 the Riccarton Flour Mills had outgrown both their original premises. It was decided to expand further and this decision resulted in the construction of a large four-storey brick mill in Addington. The mill opened in 1891 and was powered by steam, lit by electricity and serviced by the railway line next door (now greatly reduced to a single track working). The property was extended with a tall brick grain silo in 1913 (this collapsed in the quake) and storage buildings in 1924. By 1936 it had the largest output of flour in the South Island. In 1970 Wood Brothers Limited sold the mill complex and the buildings were used for a variety of functions including a (sadly inaccessible) theatre. Apparently fourteen apartments were built within the original building, however on visiting it was almost impossible to tell where these started and finished; this place has been truly savaged by vandals and taggers and there are signs of heavy drug use and squatters all over the place.

    Here's a shot of the mill in 1900 to give you some idea of the size of the place. The grain store to the left was in lockdown.

    On with the pics!



    The back area of the grain store was pitch black and littered with needles and other junk.

    Every room had this seriously weird paint job, like tentacles or something.

    Top of the tower! Under each bit of ply was a split or a hole going down 3-4 floors.

    The sale yards are nothing too spectacular, but quite interesting to have a walk through as you leave Addington.

    Thanks for looking :)


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