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GES048 - Millenium Mills, London

October 2009

Under a dark night sky GE031 & I whizzed across London to the Docklands in the East. Revellers stumbling and bumbling on their way home. Underground workers in their retina scraping orange hi-vis attire, taking a break from the depths below.

On arrival we parked up a safe distance away, registration plates don't need to be seen. The joy that is google maps had given us the access point, and in we went. Suspicious looking posts with what looked like microphones lined the perimeter road and raised cause for concern. A quick dash across the road and into the undergrowth. Just as a patrol car turns up and the driver leaps out, torch at hand to scan the area. Are those microphones live?!

Evading security, it was onto the main building and over a rattling gate. Just about to make entry to the Rank Mills building when we hear voices, a dart into the bushes. We couldn't quite see, but after 5 mins we were sure they were gone. A sigh of relief and in we go. Up to the first floor, and the so called leap of faith, and into the main Millennium Mills building. "Top down OK?" "Yup, sounds good"

On reaching the roof, we ducked for the small planes coming in to land at City Airport, on the other side of the dock.

Took some shots of the airport, and Millennium Dome (now O2 Arena) before heading for the down to the top floor.

We took a few shots before hearing voices below us. I crept down with my builders hat on (recommended for tall explorers) and saw two guys looking at a console. I crept across the room and got within 2 metres of them. The guy in the cap looked around and sighed, querying why we were in the building as security weren't allowed in. I explained i wasn't security, much to his relief. The chap in the cap was GE002, with his French companion, GE099.

As they left to exit the site, we carried on with the building to ourselves for the rest of the day, as far as we were aware. We saw various groups try to make it in during bright daylight, and they were caught trying and made to do the half mile walk of shame out of the site. An reminder to us all of the occupational hazard of being caught.

On the top floor we found the huge silos where grain was stored before being pounded into flour and turned into various products. The silos went down many floors and blocked getting from one side of the building to the other. The building was huge, vast even, vaster than John Prescott's underpants. Some areas were stripped and empty,

some areas had swings

Other areas had equipment still in situ

strange machinery of unknown purpose

It's usually advised not to explore here at night, due to huge drops that aren't barricaded off. This one goes down a longgggggg way!

Ye olde electrical boards

Other parts of the building were open to the elements

A few floors down, and we came across the numerous helter skelters that spiralled from floor to floor, carrying sacks of flour.

And where spirals brought things down, a lift system would take people up between floors, passing through narrow holes.

This is what workers would have ridden on, this was found in the dark basement, and the end of the trip to Millennium Mills.

We crossed back to Rank Mills building, and gave it a quick explore, most of the interest was in the roof and top floors. This building was far worse for lethal drops.

Some of the pillars reminded me of seaside piers

A final look around from the roof, and it was down and out, skipping past security in their whizzy cars. As we sat on a wall just outside the perimeter, a security woman walked by to check the access point. She gave us a suspicious look, but could do nothing. I took Urbanity into the centre of town, and headed for a well deserved rest, it had been around 12 hours in total.

Thanks to GE031 for a good day.