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Report - Hammill Brickworks, Woodnesborough, Kent - July 2012

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by Urbex13, Jul 29, 2012.

  1. Urbex13

    Urbex13 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

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    The History

    The site is an interesting one, with the brickworks utilising the remaining buildings of the former Woodnesborough Colliery. Following the discovery of coal under Shakespeare Cliff during an abandoned Channel Tunnel attempt there was something of a coal rush in Eastern Kent. Betteshanger, Chislet, Snowdown and Tilmanstone all produced coal for numerous years but there were even more failed collieries. Woodnesborough sits in the latter category, the onset of the First World War, unpromising test borings and issues with the extension of the East Kent Railway ensured no coal was ever raised at the site. Goodnestone & Woodnesborough Colliery Ltd sold the site to Pearson & Dorman Long (proprietors of Betteshanger Colliery) in 1923, who then sold the site on to Hammill Brick Co. four years later. The works went into liquidation in 1938 and did not produce bricks for the majority of the Second World War, eventually reforming in 1944. Presumably the Nissen huts on site date from this time. The East Kent Light Railway served the site until 1951, primarily for the purpose of delivering the coal needed to fire the kilns. The history for the period until closure is thin indeed, with the site ceasing production in 2006 and was placed on care and maintenance by 2008. There is a current Planning Application for conversion of the two engine sheds into "6 live/work units" and an "outline application for the erection of 19 dwellings" and the associated access etc.

    All in all this was a pretty relaxed explore and I was impressed with the condition of the place, which is obviously owed to it's fairly remote location. Visited with my girlfriend, who has taken to calling herself Mersie Merbex for the sake of the forums.

    The Pictures

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    Thanks for looking, any constructive criticism is welcome as always. Feel free to get in touch if you're ever in either Kent or Sheffield and want to make some plans.

    Thirteen.
     

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