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Report - Cardington Hangers - Bedford - April 2011

Nelly

Fat Fucker!!!
28DL Full Member
#1
The Cardington aircraft hangers (or more correctly termed as ‘sheds’) dominate the surrounding countryside landscape of Bedfordshire for miles where they can be spotted looming out from the horizon.

Shed no.1 was constructed in 1917 and no2 was completed a few years later in 1928, both hangers contain their own micro-climates and if you are lucky enough to find yourself inside one of these on a dry day out you may find it raining on the inside.

The front sliding doors weigh over 80 tonnes of metal each and the hangers in length extend to over 247m and rise to just over 59 metres, both sheds still remain the largest in Western Europe and could house 2 Wembley Stadiums with leftover space for a hooligan bar.

These sheds which were designed and built by hand required vast space to house an aircraft significantly large enough to compete with the monstrous Zepplins, so steel portal frames were used with pin joints to hold up the crown and all side walls of the structure.

The death count during their assembly remains vague however inevitably dozens did fall to their deaths during the construction period.

Hanger no.1 was home to the famous R101 which crashed on its maiden voyage in Beauvais, north of France killing hundreds of passengers flying over to India.

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You can just see my 15 year old daughter standing to the left of the gap in the doors.
This gives you some idea of the scale of the place

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Yeah right!!!
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My mate P7 can be seen down on the floor
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These are the blocks that the Airships were tethered to.
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This is the outside of the doors. The door operator sits
in the shed and operates the motors, the cog wheels pull the
doors along the giant "bike chain" that lays on the ground.
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