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Report - - Cane Hill Hospital - 2008 / 09 | Asylums and Hospitals | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Cane Hill Hospital - 2008 / 09


TheTimeChamber

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Last one for the week - the reposting will continue next week!

Where to start? Along with Longbridge photographs, Cane Hill was one of the first derelict sites I saw photographs of when I lost a complete day reading Simon Cornwell's seminal website, UrbexUK. From then I knew I wanted to visit the old girl. It took me a while to finally visit as I struggled to build up the confidence to approach such a fearsome secure building after reading some horror stories of people's encounters with the guards, including my brother who had an interesting encounter with them. Not as bad as one member (possibly @monk or @Chess) who ended up trapped on the boiler room roof whilst security waited for them to leave through the way they came below!


My first visit was back on a grey and drizzly morning during the summer of 2008 when word had spread through the exploring community that vegetation was being cleared to ready the site for demolition. A member from way back in the day picked me up before dawn and we made our way around the M25 to the outskirts of Croydon and discovered the terror of aquaplaning a high end mid-engined sports car. Like many explorers before us, we parked up on Portnalls road and made our way down the wrong side of the footpath to the well hidden entry point close to the boiler house. Moving fast, we were through and into the grounds; I was a nervy explorer that day and never really settled into the explore! Now, i'd like to take this point to take a small diversion into how 'on it' the security were. They actively patrolled the perimeter of the site, they kept an eye of cars parked along Portnalls Road and left tells around the site to spot if someone had moved one of them. There were many stories of people having a look at something, putting it back in a different place and security then knowing someone was about. They were persistent and crafty. A few explorers were even more crafty, I had an enjoyable evening in Cane Hill once being told where handful of the access points were that an old member maintained for himself. The Cane hill fence worked well, but didn't keep everyone out!


I loved it here. Well, my second trip made us love it. My first trip was a paranoid blur worrying about dogs and where to safely have breakfast. Throughout the summer of 2008 after my first trip, whilst demolition moved at an impressive rate, I spent many summers evenings crossing the fence and wandering around! I can vividly remember sitting outside Cane Hill on a summers evening with a handful of other explorers after finding the fence freshly sealed, wondering how to get in! I had hoped to show one explorer around, who had driven close to 200 miles to get there before demo progressed too far and the charm lost. After a quick phone call to Ridds that ended with no solution to our predicament, we headed back to Portnalls Road to leave, only to bump into security making their rounds. Normally, legging it at this point would be the way to go, but being cornered and finding them being in a friendly mood, we sat on sat on the grass chatting with them about the demolition. Tails between our legs we went to walk the perimeter fence. As we left we bumped into Ridds & Sick who had just arrived and we hastily decided to make our way back to find another way in. Murphy’s law came into effect and the guard made another guest appearance! This time a quick greeting passed between us and they went on their way. In hindsight, they made a point of stating that they were heading back to the front gate knowing full well what we might do. Whilst we had been talking to the guard earlier, their dog had been going spare and barking at the bushes and nothing would calm it down. Upon returning to our cars later, we discovered that a few more explorers had been hiding flat in the bushes waiting for us to move along and stop bloody well talking to security. This was the same trip where 5/6 stealthy explorers run full pelt into a cupboard of a half demolished ward, thinking it was a corridor, only to hear a slightly squashed cry from Ridds of “it’s a cupboard” a little too late. We lost all regard for our noise levels after that point.

We made one revisit in 2016 when the chapel briefly opened up for a while. It was good to go back, but it saddened us that nothing else was there!

Great fun; it's cliche to say it but I do miss the days of 2007 to around 2009 when everyone got along, and large day long explores were the order of the day. If you want a history of the site, there is one here on my website

Photos - I saw all of the female side, for some reason I only briefly touched the Male side. Our first trip saw us entirely disorientated, we though we were heading across the site, it turns out we had walked straight to the chapel!




From here, we made our way around the Browning / Blake ward. Somehow, we missed the upstairs ward first time round and I had to revisit to find it! N00b - this was why everyone went, a ward that was still set out with beds, had a patient ward still filled in and office piled with paper!







Other Wards - it has been too long for me to know where / what each one is!














The Mortuary - I only saw this once as it came down shortly after I visited!




Now for those that have visited any asylum around the UK, the corridors are normally obvious and easy to see from wherever you are in the building. Cane Hill was different, it was a very compact and claustrophobic facilty; something that made it difficult to list - although they could have listed a few blocks easily if they felt like it. You could pop in and out of corridors quite easily, but become quite confused as to where you were in the central section. At least I did, this was the time before smart phones and exploring was done on fuzzy flashearth printouts! The corridors still look like every corridor everywhere!






The laundry - it always felt like they just walked out one day, perhaps with a plan to clear it later, so everything was still in situ! It was wonderfully derelict in here.






The Water Tower - for years this had been sealed tight and it was only when demolition start was access possible. As soon as we heard this, we were in the car and on our way to take a look. My first climb was sketchy and up the side of the water tanks as we believed the other way to be impossible. It was only on our way down did we discover it wasn't. I learnt a lot about pigeons in this crammed environment.






Everything else - Cane Hill was a rabbits warren of side rooms, store rooms and rooms filled with unexpected items:




Finally, the spacca bike:

 

TheTimeChamber

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Here come the tears again
did you ever manage to go?

Ahh great minds and all that, I was sat thinking about the place and wrote a report up! Great photos mate, I really wish I had gone back when they started demo and got some better ones myself!
Lol, it’s good to get other people posting the old stuff and see more photos from here. I am glad I went back the summer it was being demolished to see more


We were really spoilt for choice, I miss them days lol.
I think we were!
 

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