explorations | 2002

This is a handy log of my explorations, ranging of one-off visits to small installations, through to multiple visits to large sprawling areas (the later which forms the basis of the project section of this website). It breaks it all down into handy "Day Trip" activities, a dossier of what can be seen in one day, and fun for all the family.

My diary of urban exploration if you like.

Which brings me onto another point. Some of these sojourns were simply recces, designed to scout potential targets out before attempting infiltration with a team (Severalls and Warley are high on the list to visit). Some were interesting in themselves (such as setting the scene at Cane Hill or discovering what was at Rauceby) but it you wanted the excitement, musty interiors and broken toilets, then youíd be disappointed.

Others were complete and utter disasters. The first return trip to Rauceby was an excellent example of things going completely wrong. I included it here to point out that urban exploration can be a frustrating exercise at times.

So, Iíve implement a handy scale so if you want the get to the fun stuff quickly then you can just select and click:

Recce. Scene setting stuff. No internal explorations.
Limited access but mostly walking around in the rain outside.
Full infiltration. Access all areas.

Cane Hill Lunatic Asylum 29|04|02 (Solo) Mostly demolished between 2008-2009
Where would the UKís urban exploration scene be without everyoneís favourite rambling Victorian lunatic asylum? Well, itíd be a little more varied and I wouldnít be soaking wet and covered in mud. But enough of that. Here's Cane Hill in the April showers, a walk around the perimeter fence. (Please avoid the drains. Cheers!)

RAF Wyton Photographic Factory 18|05|02 (With Offkilter)
In the 1980s and 1990s, military aircraft from RAF Wyton were deployed in photographic missions. Obviously, they couldn't take the pictures down to Boots for development and so used their own Photographic Factory. Fast forward to 2002, and the missions have stopped from Wyton, and the photographic factory is long derelict and now sold to developers. Time for a visit.

Cane Hill Lunatic Asylum 13|07|02 (With Mr. A and Mr. B) Mostly demolished between 2008-2009
This is the grand tour of the interior - a walk around the hallowed halls of Cane Hill hospital. Not so much hallowed but battered, burned, rotten, moldy and decaying. But some parts of this old institution are still beautiful in their decay and the original Victorian splendor can still be seen. And with the JCB parked outside, we covered as much ground as possible.

Severalls Lunatic Asylum 28|09|02 (With Ian)
A brief look at some of the villas at Severalls hospital. Built in 1910, this echelon plan hospital includes several small villas in its glorious grounds. This shows a move away from huge ward based hopsitals of the Victorian era, to more self-sufficient units. Plus there's a huge ward based main building there as well - super! (An tour of the exteriors only - we respected the fence.)

Rauceby Lunatic Asylum 29|09|02 (Solo) Demolished/Redeveloped in 2006
I didn't know what to expect with this one. I had some old aerial photos and a free Sunday morning. I knew the asylum was still there, but no-one else had ever mentioned it - this was pure Urban Exploring virgin territory. I was very pleasantly surprised.

Rauceby Lunatic Asylum 13|10|02 (With Smorgy) Demolished/Redeveloped in 2006
The return to Rauceby was one of the most surreal, amusing, and disappointing urban explorations Iíve been on. Itís not all fun, fun, fun in the sun, sun, sun. I was inspired enough to take just one picture.

Bourne Hospital 13|10|02 (With Smorgy) Demolished in 2003
After the rampant disappointment of Rauceby, what could be better than accidentally discovering a derelict hospital on the way home? A quick romp around the former isolation hospital at Bourne.

Warley Lunatic Asylum 18|10|02 (Solo) Demolished/Redeveloped in 2006
This was an interesting recce. Some of the hospital had gone, some was still standing, and some was lost in housing estates. And, finally, I got inside somewhere!

Cane Hill Lunatic Asylum 18|10|02 (Solo) Mostly demolished between 2008-2009
Suddenly I realised the truth: Iíd done too much new stuff: Severalls, Rauceby, Bourne and Warley. I was overwhelmed.

There was only one thing for it! Back to Cane Hill. It is nice and familiar after all.

RAF Upwood 24|11|02 (With Smorgy)
This is my local: a nice abandoned airfield with loads of buildings, bunkers and hangers.

So, on a damp Sunday morning after grabbing Smorgy, we set off to have a ramble in the ruins, concentrating mainly on the bunkers and decontamination sections. But thereís lots more here. Lotís more.

(Warning: Features pictures of dead sheep... yes, I'm sick).

Cane Hill Lunatic Asylum 08|12|02 (With Smorgy) Mostly demolished between 2008-2009
This fine day (well absolutely dreadful, miserable, cold, foggy day), Smorgy and I visited the two most popular hospitals in the UK - for urban explorers.

So, sit back, enjoy, and witness the horror of our first visit that day. Itís Cane Hill - yet again. But things are definitely changing - the old gal is starting to collapse and itís an utter mess in there. (More so than before - if that was possible).

The Canadian Red Cross Memorial Hospital 08|12|02 (With Smorgy) Demolished in 2006
And in the afternoon of that same dreadful Sunday, we hopped the fence of The Canadian Red Cross Memorial Hospital, another derelict mass of legend and fun.

Unlike the brooding broken ruin of Cane Hill, the CRCMH offers a blood soaked kitchen, burnt animal labs and a host of creepy creeps... Oh yes - this one is haunted.