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Report - - Upper Heyford Hospital, April 2013 | Asylums and Hospitals | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Upper Heyford Hospital, April 2013


mookster

grumpy sod
Regular User
I thought I'd posted this up on my 28dl rebirth but evidently not.

To cut a long waffle-filled personal story short, RAF Upper Heyford was my own massive exploring playground during my first few years of exploring from 2009 to 2013. Over about a dozen visits during that time I saw pretty much every part that I could, security liked to keep certain parts much more well sealed than others but it was all about timing and luck back then. The base was vast, even discounting the mostly in-use airfield side which you can still get tours around to this day (well maybe not right now thanks to the 'rona). It contained everything servicemen would ever possibly need, specifically US servicemen and had many features found in small American towns such as an American-styled supermarket, casino, baseball diamond, bowling alley and American street furniture and signage everywhere. I loved the base so much and went there with many different people, and was sad when in 2013 redevelopment started. As of now the sprawling mass of abandoned buildings that made up the main bulk of the base has been replaced by crappy new matchstick homes, with the only part left being around half of the old school.

The hospital was one of the last structures to be constructed in the village, it was opened in 1980 and is still to this day the ugliest building I think I've ever explored. It served the base as well as the surrounding rural villages, and closed in 2001, seven years after the main bulk of the base closed in 1994. It's closure brought about much anger in the local communities as it was a relatively new, modern hospital that was a vital local asset. When redevelopment of the base began in 2013, it was one of the first buildings to be torn down.

I had visited the hospital on my first ever trip to Upper Heyford in 2009, it was one of my first explores back then and my photography, if you could call it that, was terrible. The majority of the hospital was pitch black as the entire ground floor apart from the entrance doors was bricked up, and upstairs the only rooms that had any natural light were the patient rooms and the four corridors that looped around the building. After my visit in 2009 the hospital was quickly sealed up and it remained that way until just prior to demolition beginning. In 2011 me and my friend, determined to try anything to find a way in, managed to get into the hospital incinerator/boiler house that was behind it in a large separate building and made it halfway through a deeply flooded service tunnel that ran between the two only to find it bricked up - much swearing followed as it took a ridiculous effort to get into the boiler house in the first place, another building that was always kept very well secured and I believe myself and my friend were the only people to make it in there. During that time we even considered more outlandish methods like a grappling hook over the railings on the roof but, probably fortunately, none of those crazy ideas ever panned out.

After getting in, I was pleased to see that the place was almost exactly as my fuzzy memories from 2009 recalled. It was damp, mouldy and silent inside - the building was totally stripped of all furniture and fixtures however there were three theatres still kitted out with their lights, of which I took shocking photos of two somehow. I didn't shoot much of anything on the ground floor because by the time we got down there we were all feeling the effects of the damp, stale atmosphere and it was pitch black so didn't really want to spend more time than necessary on the damper, even more stale ground floor.









































Thanks for looking :)​
 

TheTimeChamber

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Awesome. I never managed any of the residential side of Upper Heyford as on both my visits, we either didn't have time or one of the heritage guys followed us out and herded us away from there. Urgh, I wish I had now.
 

mookster

grumpy sod
Regular User
Awesome. I never managed any of the residential side of Upper Heyford as on both my visits, we either didn't have time or one of the heritage guys followed us out and herded us away from there. Urgh, I wish I had now.
Unlucky, it really did have some nice parts tucked away most of them I wish I had gotten better photos of!
 

HC_Photos

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Just wondering if you know whether its possible to get to the control tower here? cheers!
 

HC_Photos

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
It probably would be if you sweet-talk one of the heritage people on a tour, as it's smack bang in the middle of all the occupied stuff on the airfield side.

There's not a lot in there though - http://www.rafupperheyford.com/control-tower.html#axzz6TnfNbgnr
Ah, still looks interesting though. I saw this report:


from 2017 and was wondering whether the places where these photos (particularly that post office one) are still around. It's less than an hour from me but I'd rather know before going out there.
 

mookster

grumpy sod
Regular User
Ah, still looks interesting though. I saw this report:


from 2017 and was wondering whether the places where these photos (particularly that post office one) are still around. It's less than an hour from me but I'd rather know before going out there.
The only properly 'derelict' part left is around half of the old school on the south side of the base. The rest of it, including a lot of the abandoned parts on the airfield/northern side have been demolished as well now. Your best bet as of now is contacting Heyford Park and requesting a tour of the parts you want to see, as all of the preserved bunkers are on that side as well.
 

Dragon_Urbex

Dragon Temper
28DL Full Member
Shame this was demolished. Looks like it was a rather good mooch. Nice photos!
 

Dal333

28DL Member
28DL Member
Hi just joined today to comment on this as i grew up about 4-5 miles away from here and it was quite a big part of my childhood . It was great and also very surreal as a kid to be in rural Oxfordshire in the 80s , and then basically all of a sudden to be in America in the middle of nowhere ! Like being transported into a 80s film !

The Americans put a lot of effort into the community and were great for us kids . I can remember going there with school to go bowling in the Sky king ? Bowling alley and having burgers after and it was the best thing ever for kids from a village in 1988 or so ! Also craft fairs with bbqs and life skills training kids for local kids etc as well.



It really was a huge part of growing up around here . As kids we had American schwin and Bmx bikes that they threw away and the parents used to get secondhand tools, lawnmowers etc from an American who had stayed and made a living selling stuff on Kidlington market that departing USAF families were leaving behind . When i got older i noticed the vast amount of American cars in the local scrapyards which then dwindled away after they left.

It really was sad when they left , it was great growing up with this place around , even sadder now most of its gone buts that progress . I particularly like the look of the old gas station but thats gone as well .

For someone growing up as kid in the 80s where most of the TV and films were about the US it was amazing to have this here .

Also FYI if people are not aware , the main entrance to the airfield was used in James Bonds Octopussy 1983 as a German USAF airbase .


Hope thats of some interest as some background .
 

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