Loxley United Reformed Church

Today, the once beautiful Grade II listed chapel is an empty shell. Damaged by fire, vandalised and full of graffiti, it is another one of Sheffield’s forgotten buildings.

The building was originally known as the Loxley Congregational Chapel. Constructed in 1787, the church closed in 1994 due to low congregation numbers, making it unsustainable to keep open.

Many of the 240 victims of 1864 Great Sheffield Flood are buried in the cemetery. When the Dale Dyke Dam was filled for the first time, its banks broke sending 650 million gallons of water down the Loxley Valley into central Sheffield. The dam broke around midnight. Most people were sleeping and so they were caught completely off guard. It still remains to this day, one of Britain’s worst man-made disasters.

The website Commonwealth War Graves identifies 14 graves of war dead commemorated in the cemetery.

The building was destroyed by fire in August 2016. Works have been undertaken to stabilise the walls and to restrict access. However, the metal sheets have been partially bent to enable access through downstairs windows. Restoration and reuse is under discussion. (Historic England)

Porth Wen Brick Works, Anglesey, North Wales.

August 2020.

I have been visiting Anglesey for about 25 years. I first visited Porth Wen with my parents when I was about 12 years old. I have not been for about five years or so and sadly, on this visit, I noticed graffiti, litter and general decaying of the site.

The site is extremely popular these days. It is along a popular coastal walk and so it gets a lot of foot traffic from hikers as well as explorers and photographers. At one time, you could visit and would not see a soul. It also looks like someone is living in one of the kilns.

The path down is slowly getting eroded away. When it rains, the path forms a river with the water wearing it down. In a few years, It will be inaccessible by foot.

Brickmaking started on the site before the 20th century. An old OS map dated 1889, shows a tramway and incline. However, the site of the works states ‘disused’. Production began again sometime in the early 20th century, when the present buildings were completed. The works were disused by 1949. Below are a few pictures that I took, along with a video that I made on my recent visit.

Thank you for reading. Please give my video a like on YouTube :).

Sadly, there is now quite a bit of graffiti on the site.
Beautiful
Winding house

Thanks for reading.

Abandoned Storr’s Bridge Works (Loxley, Sheffield)

WOW! What a place this is and I am really happy that I got to see it before it gets demolished, even though I know that I am a little late to the party. 28 Days Later and Derelict Places have lots of reports on this place, going back a few years, so you can take a look at how the place has deteriorated.

The footprint of this place is huge, the site was owned by Bovis Homes who bought the site back in 2006. They had planned to put 500 homes on the site. However, local opposition halted plans stating that the area could not sustain that many new homes, which I agree with 100%. I believe that discussions are underway once again to build on the site, but the plans have been scaled down. I personally think that the site should be made into some sort of nature reserve as it is located in a quiet valley surrounded by countryside.

The factory is known locally as the Storr’s Bridge Works. However, I believe that it has been occupied over the years by a few different companies, including Thomas Marshall and Co,  Hepworths and Carblox. The valley of Loxley supplied bricks to the Sheffield steel industry, beginning in the 1800s and ceasing in the 1990s. The area was rich in ganister which came from the Stannington pot clay seam. There were multiple mines in the area (I believe one may remain but I have yet to find it).

The factory closed when the demand for produce decreased alongside the decline of the steel industry in Sheffield.

There is hardly anything left of the factory today. Most of the interiors have been removed and what is left has been trashed. People have done a great deal of fly-tipping on the site also, which the council have failed to clean up.

The site is located along a public footpath and whilst there are some signs up that say “do not enter” the site is easily accessible due to the temporary fencing being removed in parts. There is some great graffiti (and some not so great) on the buildings. The most interesting part of the site was being able to walk through what I think are the old furnaces.

If anyone reading this worked at the factory, please comment and share your memories as I would love to hear them.

If lockers could talk. I bet these have heard some stories.

The Mystery of the Creepy Coastal House.

I tried to recall from my many visits to the area if this house has always been derelict. However, I could not remember. The house is situated along a public footpath, a route popular with walkers and joggers. Despite the boarding on the windows, there are no fences up, no private, or no trespassing signs. I find it strange that a house in such a beautiful area is derelict.

In the garden, there is an old, rusty lawnmower and some plant pots that grass has now grown over. It appears that the gardens were once carefully maintained. There is a small outhouse containing some rubbish and a catalogue from the 1980s. It looks like maybe this house has not been touched for some time.

There is no glass in the windows, but there is a small gap in the boarding that I managed to poke my GoPro through. When I looked at the video (linked above), the inside of the house is ransacked. Perhaps someone broke in and looked through whatever was left for anything valuable. From the interiors, I think the house has been derelict for some time.

I have scoured the internet, but I cannot find any information relating to the history of the house. I wondered what its initial purpose was. It is situated away from the other residential homes around the port. I wondered if this building was either a watch house or a fisherman’s house. The stairs at the rear, that provide access to the upstairs level made me think that it served another purpose than just being a residence. Perhaps someone elderly lived in the house and after they passed away, there was no-one to inherit the property, so it was left.

For now, it remains a mystery.

The Remains of RAF Woodhall Spa

Today, parts of the old RAF base at Woodhall Spa make up the Thorpe Camp Visor Centre. However, if you look around the area, there are other hidden remains of the old base.

Before my visit, I found some blog posts and watched some YouTube videos on the derelict parts of the base. However, when I got to Woodhall Spa, some of them have now sadly been demolished.

However, if you know where to look (some locals told me) there are still some buildings that remain.