Report - - L'Ecole Vétérinaire, Brussels - Aug 2010 | European and International Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - L'Ecole Vétérinaire, Brussels - Aug 2010

Infinity is Now

Ill Funk Freaker
28DL Full Member

Constructed in the late 20th century, the Veterinary School in Anderlecht, Brussels was made up of 19 buildings. When the school moved campus to Liege in 1991, these buildings were made redundant. While the rest of the buildings have almost completed renovation, the darkest building on the property still remains dormant and disused. It was then infiltrated by Slyv of forbidden-places.net in 2008 who discovered that this magnificent structure happened to be a home for hundreds of preserved animals, bottled up in chemicals for nearly a century.

We left our central Brussels campsite at about 4am, local time, and it was still deep in the night. The streets were thriving with lively party people, drunks and shifty characters sticking to the shadows. It was a four mile walk over to the Vet School, but it was the perfect warm up and a beautiful start to the day. By the time we'd passed Gare du Midi, we'd munched down our Boursin baguette based breakfast, and we were ready for our descent. Stars were in the sky, but there were still passersby - like London, like Paris; this city never sleeps. Receiving some awkward glances, we made our way around to our way in, then carefully made our way down into the pitch black basement known as the 'jar room', casting shadows across the pavement upon our departure from reality.


Plunged backwards into pitch blackness, it was then I witnessed an unfamiliar odour; clean yet vile. Formaldehyde. Previous explorers have been forced to leave due to skin irritations caused by this cancerous liquid. The stench of hung in my nostrils for the duration of the day, although I found it sickly pleasant. This room was the average persons' nightmare; jar after jar after jar filled with grotesque, unrecogniseable creatures - some mixed together in a single tub. The head of a calf joined with the leg of a cat. The lung of a sheep beside the brain of a bear, imprisoned behind half a centimetre of delicate glass. This really is bad dream material kids. I couldn't process what I was doing, this was unreal. There was loads of other stuff too, it's still unclear simply why vast amounts of varyingly valuable was just left there rather than transferred to the new site.


After examining the contents of the room, taking a few photographs, we ventured out into the catacomb-like cellar to look for a mystery staircase into the light. It turned out that these cellars were regularly 'rented out' by the homeless, although only only bedding, clothes and food wrappers were our evidence. It ain't nice knowing you could be getting watched, but not just by the animals.

As the sun began to breach the night's security, we delved further into the building's floors and their contents. Lots was to be found, especially down the corridors that the average wayfarer might steer clear of out of sheer fright. Infact, even if the building's treasure was to be stripped from its bowels, the school's internal facade was also quite mind blowing. Ornate mosaic tiling made up the corridor floors and the walls were composed of near enough gleaming marble. Inside the study rooms we were presented with carefully carved hard wood and ornate painted details in the auditorium up top. It was a calm morning, and we freely roamed without trouble.






The last year of walk-in access has seriously damaged the school. In a relatively 'so-so' area of Anderlecht, it was a miracle the contents of the building remained present for all that time anyway. Comparing mine with photos from 2008, I'd say at least half of the equipment is now gone. I also noted one or two tags etched into the marble walls. All I can say is that I hope the plans for this mind-blowing building are put into play as soon as possible as every day is a risk and I would hate to see this place turned to charcoal. Take this photo as an insentive to rinse your wallets and take the plunge into an abandoned holy grail; you've not got long.


By the time we left the premises, it had gotten seriously populated on the street outside, so it was a funny moment watching the public's faces as we came out smelling strongly of chemicals and decay. Crossing the street, we wandered over to the cafe opposite. The family that run the place instantly stopped talking as we entered and took a second to stare us over. I wasn't sure at the time how to interpret their expressions at the time, but looking back; they knew exactly what we'd been up to. Anyway, we celebrated our successful escapade with a coffee, a whisky and an orange juice for myself.

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