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A Life in Ruins - 100 Photos From 10 Years of Exploring the UK | Noteworthy Reports | 28DaysLater.co.uk

A Life in Ruins - 100 Photos From 10 Years of Exploring the UK



Speed

Got Epic?
Staff member
Moderator
#1
December 24th 2004 at approximately 4:00pm. As you might have guessed I remember the afternoon well!

I was 18, fresh out of school barely 6 months previously, just past my driving test. It was Christmas eve and i was sitting at home bored, much like i am as i write this! After seeing someone's photos from the simply mind boggling abandonment that was Cane Hill and subsequently discovering Simon Cornwells 'urbexuk' website i had become hooked on the idea of this new 'urban exploring' thing. In all honesty i was shit scared of it, scared of getting caught doing something i shouldn't, scared of what or indeed who i might find lurking in such places i should not be. However i knew right from the start it was the life for me. After several months of umming and ahhing i decided this was it and i hopped in the car to take what at the time seemed like a pretty lengthy 20mins drive to the outskirts of Colchester. I found myself standing by the hole in the fence calmly considering my plan of action but no sooner had i put one leg through the adrenaline took over. This all sounds so stupid nowadays but this was the first time id consciously done an 'urbex' and crossing that simple line between were your 'supposed to be' and 'not supposed to be' was enough to overload my brains usual rock solid common sense and i almost instantly found myself running towards the building, why i was running i don't know. There was no logical need i just felt vulnerable out there in the open. At the time every door on that side of the building was wide open but for some reason i found myself climbing in a window, it was the closest point to the fence i guess! Crunching down on the broken glass i was finally in and all of what you see here began.

Yeh so Severalls was my first really. In East Anglia the UE scene was virtually non existent back then. There just wasn't any other explorers in Suffolk or Essex. At least none i could find. That meant there was no places to go either, or so it seemed. There was no 28days yet, not even a dedicated UE forum yet other then the American one. There wasn't really any Google maps. Virtually no online news, digital cameras still cost a bomb and i certainly didn't have one, my mobile phones most advanced feature was Snake! Yep the world has changed somewhat since then! The big change UE wise was 28DL coming along. Thats what really kick started the scene in this country, it brought everyone together and gave everything a purpose and a sense of competition and dare i say it 'sport' that had been missing for me. As time went on i met a few locals who liked doing the same thing and then progressed onto meeting real friends in their own right. By 2006 we were travelling for 5 or more hours to see somewhere and after that there was no going back. Now approaching 2015 ive been conscious of this milestone coming up and thought that something should be done not only for me to remember all the darn cool places ive been but also for some of the new people in UE to see just whats possible if you put your mind to it.

So here we go i guess, 100 photos from 100 places that ive been trying to whittle down into 'The Best' for what seems like ever now. Compromise has had to be made as once you really look theres just so many good memories and photos from places is virtually impssible to get down the 100. Ive been to over 50 Asylums and 80 Cinemas alone and it feels like half of them should be in! Ive tried to take into account the place itself, the fun of accessing it, the fun of exploring it, the challenge faced, what we found, how suprising it was. Theres just so much you can think about when choosing! So let me know what you think. One day il get time to write a little about each and turn it into a book for now im too busy working out where i need to go explore this holiday!




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AJ Parkers Armoury Works

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Aldwych Tube Station

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Alexandra Palace

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Ardeer Dynamite Works

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Barbour Threads Lisburn

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Barcley Curles Titan Crane

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Barking Powerstation

8

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Battersea Powerstation

9

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Bawdsey Rotor Bunker

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Belvoir Park Hospital

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Berkyn Manor

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Birmingham Municipal Bank

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Bishopton Royal Ordnance Factory

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BNG Littlebrook

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BOCM Selby

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British Celenese

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British Cellophane

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British Sugar Ipswich

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British Xylonite

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Broadford Works Aberdeen

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Brompton Road Disused Tube Station

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Bull and Bush Floodgate Control

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Burnley Empire Theater

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Bush Boake Allen Works

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Cabot Carbon

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Cadburys Summerdale

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Cane Hill

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Cardiff Civil Defense Bunker

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Ceulan Mill

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Crane Foundry Ipswich

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Curtis Fine Papermill

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Dalton Mills Keighley

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Denbigh Asylum

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Derby Royal Infirmary

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Doncaster Grand Theater​
 
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Speed

Got Epic?
Staff member
Moderator
#2
36

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Dreamland Margate

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Fletchers Papermill

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Ford transit Factory Southampton

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Fox Brothers Tone Mills

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Gee Printworks Denbigh

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George Barnsley and Sons

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Gillette Factory Clock Tower

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Hartwood Hospital

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Grays State Cinema

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Greenwich Powerstation

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Grimsby Ice House

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GWR Chain Shop

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Hams Hall Powerstation Control Room

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Haslar Hospital

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Hellingly Asylum

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Heron Tower

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High Royds Asylum

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HMS Ganges

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Hume Hippodrome

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Inverkip Powerstation

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Kimberley Brewery

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Kingsway Telephone Exchange

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LDV

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London Cable Conduits

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Maltby Colliery

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River Fleet

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McMullens Brewery

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Methil Powerstation

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Middleton Mine

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Millennium Mills

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Mitchell Grieve Needle Works


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Monkton Farleigh CAD

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NGTE Pyestock

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Old Joe University Clock Tower​
 
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Speed

Got Epic?
Staff member
Moderator
#3
70

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Pontypridd Townhall Theater

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Preston Odeon

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RAF Fauld

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Rank Hovis Mill Hull

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Rover Longbridge

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Severalls

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Shard

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Shoreham Cement Works

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Spillers Mill Waterford

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Spring Quarry

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St Gerrards TB Hospital

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St Joesph's Seminary

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Stanton Iron Foundry

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Steetley Mangnesite Works

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Stewartby Brickworks

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Stirchley Baths

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Stockton Globe Theater

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Stone House Asylum

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London Transport Substation

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Tenby Mortuary

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Terrys Clocktower

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TG Green Pottery


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Tolly Cobbold Brewery


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Turner Brothers Asbestos Mill

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U475 Soviet Submarine

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Welbeck Colliery

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West Bromwich Spring Works

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West Park Mental Hospital

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Weston Point Powerstation

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Wetherby Potteries

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Harold Wood
 

Oxygen Thief

Admin
Staff member
Admin
#9
Unreal that is, thanks Speed. I know you've done hundreds that aren't there as well.

I couldn't do a thread like that, not for numbers, but my pictures are an embarrassment compared to that.
 

Boomstick84

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#10
Awesome.

Enjoyed the read almost as much as the pictures. Certainly inspirational for someone relatively new to the scene and shows just what amazing stuff is out there if you're willing to look.

It was interesting to hear your recollection of your first explore and reassuring to know even you old heads also suffered from those initial nerves!

Thanks for taking the time to share all that :thumb
 

Speed

Got Epic?
Staff member
Moderator
#15
Ha i think ive fixed all the errors now. Its insane how long it took to do this, ive been making the list on and off for a month or two but spent about 4 hours today making it into a format i could post and naturally changing my mind a cock load of times! Theres probably a pool of 100 or more places that could easily take the last 20 places on the list and not diminish it at all.

All that remains to say is thanks to everyone who helped me over the years, couldn't have seen half of it on my own. Merry Christmas!