GES033 - Abbey Mills Pumping Station Trip 2
I should have ticked this site off ages ago, I'd received word about access being open and countless people had been in. However when I finally got around to having a look, the access had been sealed off. Not seeing any other way in without being Spiderman, I crossed it off the list for the time being. That was until I saw a recent picture pop up on Flickr and GE007 was keen to get in. I stood waiting for GE007 on the Greenway that passes in front of the building, under which runs the Northern Outfall pipes.
As I sat trying not to look too conspicuous, a portly chap came walking down the path, and stopped a few metres from me, and began messing with his phone. He continued to stand there for awhile, and getting nervous i walked up the Greenway a bit, and thankfully recognised the walking style of GE007. I explained about the bloke, and GE007 decided we'd use a different route in. This involved walking along the nearby channel on tiny paths twisting through shrubs and bushes, before finding a gap in a fence. A dart along the base of a low bank for 40m or so, and then up the bank when past the new pumping station. We stood out of the view of the cctv, and looked at the new building, wondering if there was a way in. At that point a figure emerged behind coming up the way we'd come. It was the same bloke as had stood near me earlier. This was getting a bit freaky. We thought he was undercover (or badly dressed) security or something, but he didn't come across to us. He just stood there. So I marched off and quickly jumped the high gate and back quickly jogged to the Greenway, GE007 not far behind me. There's no way the bloke would get over that fence easily with his girth. We decided to wander off and get a drink, and me some chips, and wait the guy out for an hour. The obvious thing is that he must have been looking for some 'male friendly' action of some kind. Not from us he wasn't.
Beers drunk, chips eaten, rollies smoked and bladders emptied. We returned to the Greenway, looking carefully around for unsavoury types, it was quickly into the site, and we started looking for potential ways in. The old access was still firmly closed. We grabbed and jumped and clamoured over the building until GE007 made a breakthrough, and we were in.
We went straight up to the top of one of the 4 spiral stone stairs, which open out onto somewhat precarious girders in the roof structure of the building. I couldn't get over just how mesmeric and amazing this building was. It wasn't just a building, it's art! GE007 takes pics on the other end of the beam.
Looking down into the unmitigatingly beautiful spectacle spreading out below.Ruined only by the annoying glare from artificial lights.
A fish-eye of the above view taking in the whole awe-inspiring vista, as i sat uneasily on the girder.
This ranks as one of my favourite photos i've taken, a fisheye taken from the corner. The precarious nature of taking the shot only adds to this being a favourite.
Back on terrafirma so to speak, or at least not a 40cm wide beam.
When I first saw the building from the outside, I thought it might be possible to look out the little windows at the top of the building. As you can see from this angle, that's wildly impossible.
One of the arms of the building, as it's arranged in a cross like fashion.
GE077 at work. He has to stand like that due to the nature of his huge balls.
Information booth in the middle of the ground floor, giving a history of the place.
Lights on the panel, as this is a live back up facility for the newer Station F across the way. One of the electric pumps sits in the centre of the picture.
To the untrained eye some rather confusing dial. Eagle eyes may spot the map on the wall tucked behind the right dial.
Stood in front of two of the electric pumps. The stairs behind me lead down to the less attractive side of the station, where the large sewage pipes are.
Control panel for the inner workings of the station.
below stairs, the pipes that take the poop to the Northern Outfall Sewer outside the building and under the Greenway. Only when Station F can't handle the volume of course, or requires maintenance.
Due to the stalker chap, time was now running late, so we had to dash, and ran off into the night.