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Report - - REPORT- MINLEY HOME FARM- BLACKWATER- MAY 2021 | Residential Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - REPORT- MINLEY HOME FARM- BLACKWATER- MAY 2021


Samus

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
I had wanted to visit this site for a long time, I had previously gone there but at the time, I couldn't see a way to get in that wouldn't perhaps pose a risk to myself & as I was solo, I put a pin in it for another day.

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This time however I had company and it was on!

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Surrounded by woodland & Mod ground, this is an easy place to find but it is also a popular place for dog walkers and we also saw a group outside just admiring the building & a few pitched tents in the woods, so clearly a very popular place to be for cadets & my friend told me we were also near a pheasant farm and sometimes hunting occurs there too. I wouldn't say it was busy but the pub near to it was hosting a cricket match so perhaps we saw more people than would usually be there but no security.

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A brief history to this wonderful building:

Designed by Arthur Castings (circa 1900) Minley Home Farm was built for Laurence Currie, who was the third generation of the Currie family to inherit the larger Minley Manor estate, the farm being his most substantial development to the manor itself and due to its location, was intended to be viewed from the Manor itself but subsequent tree growth has diminished its visibility from the main Manor.

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The farm follows the style of other buildings on the Minley estate, with Castings imitating the design style of his predecessor Devey & utilising brick diapering (seen in the diamond shape brick pattern on the front) & shaped gables to create a distinctive look, that also matched the main Manor house and although a beautiful building (and I was amazed how much of the exterior still stood considering fires, vandalism etc), it has not been deemed worthy of a national listing as a listed building because it presents no innovations or anything that the people who make that decision consider to be of architectural value and unfortunately to gain such a listing, it had to be judged on its own merit and not as part of the larger Minley Manor itself (which is listed as a Grade II- registered landscape).

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The farm itself is described as a complex structure, combining farmhouse and farmhand structures a lot of attention was paid to what materials (such as tiles) were used where, although again, even its design and layout is not seen as anything revolutionary compared to other farms of this age, in building it, it would appear Castings did not really attempt anything new and that the landowner Currie, was not experimenting with more modern farming techniques either, rather this is seen as a pretty standard farm of its time with nothing that really stands out.

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(I personally disagree but then I just like old buildings, I'm no expert here at all).

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The farm buildings themselves are in a pretty bad state of repair internally. The roof is missing in parts and in some areas, nature really has reclaimed it but the exterior itself seems to be pretty solid in areas and a lot of the internal walls still seem quite sturdy and whilst there are parts that are now inaccessible (due to broken staircases etc), I found it a pretty easy place to move around and I loved the seeing the stark differences between the beautifully (though sadly decayed) wallpaper of the living spaces and animal pens.

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The Minley Home Farm has been in MOD ownership since 1936 and was also let out as a stables in the 1990's, however the MOD have neglected the buildings which has allowed it to decay to its current state, though subsequent MOD plans to see it demolished and build a troop shelter there instead have thus far been denied but there also appears to be no plans to restore it either as this would require considerable resources and as stated above, the buildings have been rejected for protected status.

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We managed to spend a good couple of hours here, completely undisturbed and finally being able to get inside and see this old girl, was a real delight for me & I am pretty sure I spent the whole time walking around with a dumb grin on my face exclaiming how amazing it all was and just trying to imagine what it would have been like when it was first built. It's a real shame to see such a lovely building slowly decay over time and be neglected in such a way but I am glad I got to see it.

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Some bonus images below:

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To me, this was the perfect place for my third explore and second report, I just fell in love, in an ideal world, I would be the owner and repairing this building but alas, I must only admire it.

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Calamity Jane

i see beauty in the unloved, places & things
Regular User
Nice opener there. I wasn't expecting it too be so trashed tbh, looks like a death trap. Great history behind it. Good to scratch an itch.
 

Samus

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Nice opener there. I wasn't expecting it too be so trashed tbh, looks like a death trap. Great history behind it. Good to scratch an itch.
Me either to be honest, I am glad I scratched that itch but I had read a previous report so I too was a tad shocked to see how much it had decayed, the last couple of years have not been kind to this building.
 

urbandorset

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Jeez, I went there six years ago and I would barely recognise the place now. Then again, I suppose six years is a while....
 

Samus

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Blimey she's gone downhill! Good to have an update, thanks.
Hugely downhill and I think with windows missing, lots of the roof gone etc, that deterioration is just going to accelerate and get worse.
 

RXQueen

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Lovely. Nice to see the inside, I went last year but didn’t cross the fence as the army were training around it armed with guns
 

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