Report - - Great Eastern Drying Shed, Sawston | Industrial Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Great Eastern Drying Shed, Sawston


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
So here it goes... My first post...

Great Eastern Drying Shed, Sawston

This building is pretty cool in terms of it's history... It was built as a Dryshed for skins at the Tannery c1820 in part as a reflection of the owners ego! It is the largest Drying Shed in the UK, is Grade II* listed and has been on Historic England's Buildings at Risk Register since the start. The condition is perilious and the building is largely held together by scaffolding now. The site is still an active Tannery.

Note: This was an authorised visit... It just seemed a shame that few people know about it!



The extent of the scaffold pretty clearly shows the delapidation of the building...


First floor level... You can just about see the collapsed second floor to the left. Acro-props holding what's left up...


Second floor level... The old lift shaft is visible to the left... Rotten board to the right...


Central section of the building looking through the collapsed roof, through the second floor to the first floor...


From the scaffold walkway at roof level..


Other listed buildings on the site with drying areas above (where the louvred panels are). The skins would have been washed in the pits at ground level before being scraped at first floor level and dried above. The now overgrown stream is seen to the left which would have provided fresh water to the site.

Enjoy! ;)


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Terrific photos, thank you.
Not absolutely accurate to say few people know about it. As you say, it's been on Historic England's Buildings at Risk register since they began in the 1990s, and was on the front cover of the Register for the east of England in 2016. All the local authorities know about it, and the village certainly knows about the site, smelly and polluted as it is. The shed is easily visible from the adjacent road. People (including me) have been trying to find a solution to rescue the building since the late 1990s, probably earlier. The owner is an immovable object.
There are good (unauthorised) photos on Derelict Places too: https://www.derelictplaces.co.uk/main/industrial-sites/32795-hutchings-harding-tannery-cambs-march-16-a.html#.XDYqwq10fMU
Spread the word and keep up the pressure. This building should not be lost because of deliberate neglect - that's contrary to paragraph 19 of the National Planning Policy Framework. Yet it's what Historic England are preparing to recommend.
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