Report - - West Camden Catacombs, Up Empty Carriage Line (another one!), London - Feb 12 | Underground Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - West Camden Catacombs, Up Empty Carriage Line (another one!), London - Feb 12


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Hello all!

I know there's been a lot of reports on this patch of late, I hope you'll forgive me. This was our first proper UE, so that's partially why we chose it - a "known good" site, interesting enough but not too difficult for a pair of noobs.

Photos are from regular point-and-shoots - we're no big photographers - but they're nice mementos and a couple came out quite nice I think.

Oh, and I'll try to avoid an epic narrative - I'm sure you've all read enough Joycean first posts!


I thought I was going to be billy no mates, but when I mentioned it to my flatmate the night before he was dead keen - phew! We did a quick internet recce and trucked off to Camden the next morning.

An access point was found was easily enough, but not at all suitable for broad daylight. However, a recce of the area soon found us the way in.

The catacombs themselves are quite limited. The route to the eastern tunnels is bricked-off:

As has been mentioned in previous reports, the coal stores are flooded and one is fenced-off. One could probably cross the old I-beams with some footwork or a plank, but we didn't fancy stacking it into canal filth for what was probably simply more flooding. I've heard that it might get drained every x years..?

The main event is of course the disused Up Empty Carriage Return. This track runs along and ~5m below the tracks coming out of Euston. It goes roughly between Primrose Hill and Euston - you can make out the NW section on Google Maps. A shaft follows the cables you see on the wall about 15-20m down into the tunnel.

There were clear signs of recent UErs down there - tea lights! There were also 3 office-type safes that had been bashed open with deposit slips etc. - clearly knocked off from a shop or similar. Evidently less salubrious types also know of this location.







This was our first time, so we had a lot of fun switching off the torches and hopping across the sleepers in the pitch dark and total silence. Well, almost total - despite knowing the track was completely dead, we still shit ourselves whenever we heard a train coming above!


Having seen everything there was to see, we headed for home. We stopped for one last snap back in the catacombs, when we had a very near miss - at the west end of the main tunnel is the storeroom for a restaurant. As my buddy was lining up the camera for a timer shot, a swarthy European chef came blustering in. We both hit the deck, but I was directly in a shaft of light - the very reason we'd stopped for a photo! Fortunately he didn't look up, but it was a nice little scare to round off our first trip!


All in all, despite being a bit of a cliché by 28DL standards, it was an excellent first exped for us. As we sat in the pub afterwards, the talk was of one thing - where to go next!

See you out there in the smoke.


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