So this time we decided to visit the Abandoned Hexham Hospital was on the table. Up at 9am sharp, straight to McDonalds to catch the last of those deliciously calorific breakfast offers, stock up on petrol, grab a Starbucks for energy and away we go.
During our research of Hexham Hospital (prior to arriving) we had been reading that security has been tightened due to vandalism around the hospital. Apparently a load of kids have been breaking in and setting fires so our plan was naturally to turn up in our camo’ed up car (yeah.. a bright white Golf), handbrake turn into the car park and leg it inside. In reality, we parked in their car park, (which was pay and display. I was howling) waved at an old couple of explorers, and entered the giant hole in the wall. We saw no security and the cameras were either broken or dysfunctional.
Boy, the tip we got about the vandalism wasn’t a lie. Hexham Hospital has only been closed for about a year and a half and yet the entrance was completely destroyed. You have to initially walk through this little outhouse (which I am assuming was an office) then carry on through the back door to reach the main courtyard. This tiny office building has been utterly annihilated. Walls are jet black from fires, graffiti of hilarious vulgarities, asbestos ceilings been knocked down (seriously). They have even managed to put a giant hole in a full concrete walls – it looks like it was smacked with a wrecking balls (simmer down Miley). On seeing the Asbestos, we got out of that building straight away. Plenty more to explore.
So we enter the next site. I’m not joking when I say this place is a complete labyrinth. You would have thought that it being a hospital there would be a main courtyard and all the other functions built around it – this isn’t the case. To get through you have to navigate building to building making remembering where you have been a complete nightmare. Anyway, we walk through one of the buildings and it’s apparent the vandalism is calming down, obviously the kids have been scared to go deeper into the hospital. Obviously it’s been pillaged by the local pikeys as there are radiators missing, floorboards smashed in for the copper pipes and just random shit missing.
After walking through some of the corridors (this place has huge narrow corridors that are pitch black even during the day. Super creepy. It was awesome.) we get to the living quarters. Every room in this place is full to the brim with brand new beds, chairs and desks. All this furniture is just thrown in a pile ceiling high and left to rot. Damn shame, there could have been a lot of use for it. While walking along we notice a giant printer and, being the IT technicians that we are, want to check that mother out. Get the torch out, get the camera and have a look at this bad boy. This printer is huge, I’m talking about two metres wide and must have been used for architecture. Worst part is – it’s in perfect condition. Worth quite a few £££ and not even particularly heavy. We look around the room some more and find old desktops, unsalvaged and with their HDD intact. Now shit, I know that people don’t take Data Protection seriously, but when you find three to four Harddrives in a hospital that is seriously taking the piss. Someone could cause utter mayhem with whatever is on those drives and the NHS have just left them there in plain sight.
Anyway, we didn’t want to get involved with that mother so continued on our journey down the corridor. Then we found a bright red light. “Shit! Sensor! Duck!”. Yep, a sensor, a bright green keypad and an alarm system. After grabbing our manhood and essentially ‘manning up’ we ran into the room to check if the alarm was going off (the exterior of the building has brand new wiring AND alarm) so we could shut it off. Turns out that these brand new sensor are connected to the alarm however there is an error code flashing. These pirates couldn’t even be bothered to reconfigure the sensor to the alarm which resulted in the sensor detecting us but not setting off the alarm. Plus for us, fail for NHS.
With peace of mind about the sensors being, well, shit – we explored the rest of the hospital. Think I’ve written a fuck load already, so I’ll let you view the pictures for the rest. They speak for themselves.
This journey rocked. Once the initial vandalism was out-of-the-way the rest of the hospital was a great little exploration. Two hours later (since paid for two hours of parking) we were out and waving at an urbex’er who had just pulled up. Oh and I’ve just rememberd. These cowboys left ALL their medical records inside the hospital including card details, addresses, clients and conditions. Crazy!
“The first written record of a workhouse in Hexham, which was more of a prison by contemporaneous standards, dates back to 1777. It was a relatively large establishment for its time as it was capable of housing up to fifty-five inmates. In the report it is noted that the governess was named Mrs. Hutchinson, and that she supported every pauper at the weekly rate of two shillings and six pennies (approximately twelve and a half pence in today’s currency) per head. However, following the founding of the Hexham Poor Law Union in 1836, a new Hexham Union workhouse consisting of three parallel two-storey buildings was constructed in 1839, by J. H. Morton, on the south side of Dean Street. Like most other workhouses, the daily regime was brutal and the establishment was feared by those outside of its walls (this was to deter able-bodied people from applying). Everyone, regardless of age or sex, was required to work, doing jobs that would often lead to exhaustion and ill health. What is more, the food, uniform, medical care and education tended to be inadequate, and once incarcerated inside the workhouse families were often split up and punished if they attempted to communicate with one another. “