On 18th August 1939, the Air Ministry sought approval to acquire the disused Glynrhonwy Isaf slate quarry which had closed in 1930; the quarry, near Llanberis in North Wales, was deemed suitable for the storage of 18,000 tons of bombs. It consisted of a number of deep open pits, linked together by tunnels. Following the apparent success of the design employed at Harpur Hill in Derbyshire, the air ministry decided to use the same technique at Llanberis, converting the eastern pit into an underground depot, but because of the great depth of the quarry the design was adapted to produce a structure with two floors throughout. The lower level and a conventional flat reinforced concrete ceiling which also formed the floor of the upper level which had an arched roof like that at Harpur Hill. Standard and narrow gauge railway lines entered the lower level of the depot through the original quarry access tunnels, while three electric lifts transported bombs to the upper floor. The deep pits to the west of the depot were later used for burning and dumping redundant and dismantled ordnance. Overhead protection was given by forty feet of broken slate. In response to pressure from the treasury efforts were made to cheapen and accelerate the construction of Llanberis, but unfortunately the cost cutting had disastrous consequences only six months after the depot was opened.
Hendre is situated not far from Mold in north wales. The mineral extracted from this mine up until the early 1980’s was fluorite also known as fluorspar. It comercialy had quite a few uses some of which bieng a flux for iron smelting, and flouride thats found in toothpaste. Fluorspar comes in many different colours and because of this it was also used in jewellery, most famously was the blue or purple form that is mined from the blue john caverns in Derbyshire. This mine is not the most extensive mine but the chambers are huge in this place.
The Dinorben Arms is a grade 2 listed, 17th century inn. He arrive to find it in a very sorry state, plenty of water damage, giving it terrible floors. The place is reported to be haunted, and does have a rather spooky atmosphere.
We took a chance on exploring a rather ordinary looking farm in North Wales, while the structure itself didn’t turn out anything special, we did find a very nice surprise in one the the barns. A Glider in pieces, which on further inspection turned out to be British National free distance record for two seaters. Its pilots were David Stabler and Jeremy Moore. Apart from ‘sticky’ conditions around Cambridge, the flight was not hard with thermals taking them to 5,000 ft. Declared goal was Perren-porth which would have given them the two seat National Goal flight record as well. The previous free distance record was flown by John and Valery Fielden some years ago in a Bergfalke 3. This was 421.5 kms. They still hold the Goal flight for the two seater British National Record.The Bergfalke 2-55’5 BGA No. is 2159. The ’55’ indicates that it is the 1955 version of the MU 13E which was first offered for sale for 7,500 OM (then £750) in 1951. We like to think that this indicates that it is a vintage sailplane. Its landing in Cornwall was at 1900 hours.
Lluesty hospital, built as a workhouse in the late 1830s, has not been used since the new Holywell Community Hospital opened in 2008. The building is listed but there is land for development on the site, with room for up to 70 homes.
Pool Park was rebuilt in 1826-1829 for the second Lord Bagot. It was acquired by the North Wales Counties Mental Hospital and opened in 1937 to accommodate 87 patients for relief of overcrowding at the Denbigh hospital. It has a main elevation of 2-storeys, plus attic, and is rendered with a slate roof. It has a nine bay front with projecting gabled end bays. The centre three bays are also gabled with a projecting central entrance bay. The entrance has an ornate pilastered porch with coat of Arms above and an arched entrance. There are small pane transome and mullion casement windows and gabled dormers. It is now in urgent need of repair.
This Halloween we decided to do something a little different. We started the evening with an explore of the asylum, around the admin block, through the church and into the mortuary. This was enough to get us spooked, before setting up our sleeping bags inside one of the cells and settling down for the night. Here is the footage we took that night: Thanks for watching Photos from our previous explores can be found here. A special Thanks to Oliver Cadden for creating this video.