Report - - Ponteland Royal Observer Corps - July 2020 | ROC Posts | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Ponteland Royal Observer Corps - July 2020


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Despite many successful and failed explorations under our belts collectively, this is our first post on this forum.

Over the summer we have discovered the world of Urban Exploration after stumbling upon an abandoned football pitch in Washington one afternoon. Since then, our thirst for discovering new derelict places in our area, as well as revisiting those that explorers before us have documented on here.

Yesterday we attempted a couple of different spots in the Newcastle area, even bumping into fellow explorers on our journey, however, we had hard luck for the majority of our time outside.

We did however come across a ROC in the Ponteland area - as a last ditch attempt to save our adventure and not be completely disheartened with out efforts. Despite being done before on this forum, we decided that we wanted to see the place for ourselves, as there was no real footage of what laid beneath the entrance of the bunker.

History -

Throughout the tensions of the Cold War in the 20th Century, many underground outposts were set up across the United Kingdom by volunteers of the Royal Observers Corps - to lookout for axis nuclear activity and heed an early warning if an attacking threat did ever become prominent in their area. These were all set up by volunteers and although they were permitted by the UK Government - they were in no way affiliated.

These posts were usually manned by three, and there were roughly 1500 set up across the country. A small number of these posts were preserved and have since been turned into museums, as a nod to those brave men who would submerge into darkness to protect their country. Many of the posts were also demolished for reasons such as: the reorganisation of the ROC in 1968, their hazardous demeanour, of because of the resignation of the ROC in 1995, after the Cold War ended. However, a number of them were left to their own devices, and have since been targeted by anti social behaviour and vandalism. Unfortunately, the case for Ponteland's ROC base was the latter.

What we found -

The ROC was definitely one of the harder places on our bucket list of local historical monuments to visit, and took a lot of research to find. We were actually about 400 yards off initially, instead discovering a water pipe network on a nearby field. All hope was lost and we were heading back to the car when a member of our group luckily stumbled upon the ROC in all its former glory.

Fortunately, the latch had been left open (not sure how long it had been like that, although from former visits that I found on this forum I'd guess it's been open for a couple of years). We opened the latch to find probably the biggest spider say in a web to greet us, which was enough to knock one of the lads away until we could coax it away for enough time for us to explore the location. At first sight, the ladders seemed to be in great condition, which is probably the only part of the bunker that was. Unfortunately, as mentioned previously, this particular ROC had been targeted by vandals and was a victim of anti-social behaviour. Empty cans of cheap lager and nasty cider filled the hollow at the bottom of the entry point.

We did decide though that since we had travelled all that way to look at it, we would be fools not to dive down and take a look, with one member obviously staying atop (for safety reasons). Unfortunately, it was a lacklustre experience and the bunker itself had been burned to the core, in what seems like an arson attack. A real shame to see such a brilliant piece of English history be dragged down in that manner.

Despite the lack of inner beauty, the trip itself was brilliant. We had good fun, learned a lot about the history of ROC's and got some good photos below to share with the forum. We hope you also enjoy the viewing as much as we did!

The Photos -





28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Shame it's been burnt out, thanks for the update all the same. Look forward to seeing some more stuff from you guy's :thumb
Thanks a lot buddy, appreciate the kind words. Definitely a shame that it’s been hit by arson but definitely a canny explore nonetheless!


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Hi WExploreNorthEast, was the Washington Football pitch down at Chartershaugh? It was actually a Chester-le-street District Council Pitch that one.


28DL Member
28DL Member
Ah yes, I was up here a while ago, same state.
Used pics from it towards my gcses. Had this idea of some how cleaning it out.


Teaching the boy to explore
28DL Full Member
That was the first ROC I ever visited.
had similar issues as yourself trying to find it as we didn’t really know what we were looking for and we stumbled across it just as dusk was setting in.
my profile picture was actually taken there about 7 or 8 years ago but I don’t remember if it had been burnt out at that point. It hadn’t on my first visit.
Glad to see people still interested in finding these sites of interest although sadly more and more of them become vandalised over time.

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