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Report - The Molendinar Burn, Glasgow - Oct 2008

Discussion in 'Underground Sites' started by BenCooper, Oct 7, 2008.

  1. BenCooper

    BenCooper Mr Boombastic
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    The City of Glasgow's name comes from the Gaelic Glasgu, meaning dear green place - the dear green place in question was a beautiful wooded valley beside the Molindenar Burn where St. Mungo (also known as Kentigern) founded a church in the 6th Century.

    The Molindenar Burn kept it's importance in Glasgow's history for a long time - the later cathedral was built approximately on the site of St. Mungo's church, and a bridge (the Bridge of Sighs) was built over the burn to the Necropolis. The burn also marked the eastern border of the city, and later was used to power the first of the mills that sprung up in the city.

    The city outgrew the burn, though, and in the 1870s it was culverted over and almost forgotten - Wishart Street now runs along it's path next to the cathedral. It's exposed at one small section next to the old Great Eastern Hotel, so I went for a look.

    The exposed section:

    2624650527_1030bde97f.jpg

    The burn runs under Duke Street, and takes a sharp turn to the right:

    2919675556_9168c7b22d.jpg

    It starts off stone-lined:

    2919694118_2de6ddf60f.jpg

    Turns to oval brick:

    2919703758_76323d6d4b.jpg

    Then very low concrete:

    2918866493_0259ff2936.jpg

    Then steel pipe, which takes a sharp turn then carries on straight for a while:

    2919729636_c2edcbc9d1.jpg

    Before turning into a lovely 7' high brick tunnel:

    2918921365_2a090f2a10.jpg

    This carries on for quite a while, past a blocked-off side flue:

    2919773716_34672b0ce5.jpg

    Looking up at a manhole on Wishart Street (I think) - note the slates used as a platform:

    2918993441_ba77231960.jpg

    And a more modern access shaft - I'm not sure why there are two ladders:

    2919855318_eb4a0c1321.jpg

    Then, stalactite city:

    2919037923_edab59d549.jpg

    In places, it looked like a natural cave:

    2919943940_d60438b152.jpg

    With only a little brick showing through:

    2919119593_621f455379.jpg

    And old pipes slowly filling up:

    2919984284_13212ec856.jpg

    I met some of the locals:

    2919995424_2228d01c0c.jpg

    It turned back into steel pipe:

    2919178413_41563f3546.jpg

    Then what looks like an open channel that's been concreted over:

    2920050566_f1d2c5ccb0.jpg

    A few more stalactites:

    2920069264_9dd0400ea0.jpg

    And a very low chamber with two inlets - I didn't feel like crawling any further:

    2919231825_5d7106ceb2.jpg

    Returning to the start, I went downstream a bit:

    2919251673_68440a36ff.jpg

    Into the next tunnel:

    2920104820_3d6d5ce226.jpg

    And carried on for about 10 minutes before turning back - downstream is a mission for another day.

    2920089150_db12c1ee8a.jpg

    I'm not sure how far I got - it certainly felt quite far, I think I got all the way along Wishart Street to Alexandra Parade. Looknig at some old maps, the burn split in two about there, which would make sense with what I saw.

    There are a bunch more pictures in my Flickr set...
     

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