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Report - Cardington Shed No 1 Decemeber 2011

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by Tassadar, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. Tassadar

    Tassadar 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    May 1, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Quick visit with Femaxer en-route elsewhere, shouts to Nelly for intel and support package.

    This place is awesome , truely massive, and beautiful light streaming in through the safety netting.


    Got to say i love this site not because its full of stuff or has that much to offer but more the sheer size and effort took to build it and it ouzes history out of every poor.
    went with my mate lostexplorer (adamlc)
    The South hanger is now owned by Airship Technologies, who are trying to revive the airship business. The North hanger is used as a super big sound stage for films. Most of the outdoor Gotham Cty scenes for Batman Begins were filmed inside the hanger, aswell as several recent James Bond films.

    Airships, barrage balloons and RAF Cardington

    One of the two Cardington Sheds, with people in the foreground for scale.Cardington became one of the major British sites involved in the development of airships when Short Brothers bought land there to build airships for the Admiralty. They constructed a 700-foot-long (210 m) airship shed (the No. 1 Shed) in 1915 to enable them to build two rigid airships, the R-31 and the R-32. Some 800 people worked there in 1917, most of them travelled daily from Bedford[citation needed]. Shorts also built a housing estate, opposite the site, which they named Shortstown.

    The airships site was nationalised in April 1919, becoming known as the Royal Airship Works.

    In preparation for the R101 project the No 1 shed was extended between October 1924 and March 1926; its roof was raised by 35 feet and its length increased to 812 feet. The No. 2 shed (Southern shed), which had originally been located at RNAS Pulham, Norfolk, was dismantled in 1928 and re-erected at Cardington.

    After the crash of the R101, in October 1930, all work stopped in Britain on airships. Cardington then became a storage station.

    In 1936/1937 Cardington started building barrage balloons; and it became the No 1 RAF Balloon Training Unit.

    For both airships and barrage balloons, Cardington manufactured its own hydrogen, in the Gas Factory, using the steam reforming process. In 1948 the Gas Factory became 279 MU (Maintenance Unit), RAF Cardington; and then, in 1955, 217 MU. 217 MU, RAF Cardington, produced all the gases used by the Royal Air Force until its closure in April 2000; including gas cylinder filling and maintenance.

    The two airship sheds ceased being part of the RAF Cardington site in the late 1940s and they were put to other uses. The fence was moved, so they were outside the main RAF Cardington site.

    For many years until around 2001, one of the sheds was used by the Building Research Establishment as a whole building test facility for the Cardington tests. Here, multi-storey steel, concrete and wooden buildings were constructed and then destructively tested within the huge space available. This shed was repainted and looked after in comparison with the other shed.

    The buildings tests were mentioned during the course of the BBC series "The Conspiracy Files" as evidence in the controversy surrounding the collapse of World Trade Center Building 7 on 11 September 2001

    A company called Airship Industries tried to revive the fortunes of the airship industry in the other shed in the 1980s,[citation needed] but the efforts ended in failure. The site is currently being used for the development of a new design of airship, the Skycat, by the company Hybrid Air Vehicles.




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    Redroodle likes this.

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