Set out this afternoon to check out a local road culvert I spotted on FlashEarth a while back. It’s very modern so not especially interesting, but pretty long, as it passes below a two lane A road, then 8 lanes of trunk route. As expected, I found a nice convenient spot to park the car and access is pretty much unrestricted. The width of the dyke leading up to the culvert looked promising, so I scrambled down for a look.

I’d thought that it would pass under all 10 lanes in one section but, by the looks of things, it splits half way and takes a turn about 30 degrees after the first shorter section. The water was barely a trickle, but I noticed heavy safety chain hand rails down the sides, obviously suggesting that it gets pretty fast and deep at times.

We’ve had some pretty massive downpours over the last week and the sky was starting to cloud up, so I took the wise approach and stuck to the old Urbex adage, “When it rains, no drains”. In the end, it turned out to be a smart move – late afternoon the skies turned black and a massive downpour fell from the skies.

Definitely mark that one down for another day when the forecast’s dry for a few days.

With nothing better to do, I took a drive out into the Fens – up to Peterborough, back down through Ramsey, then up and over to Wisbech. I’d noticed an interesting pumping station on the opposite side of the river numerous times and found my way round to it, only to find it’s now a private house.

Heading back, I found a burnt out bungalow, so stopped for a nose around. It was quite odd – half of it looks like it burnt down last week, with food on the kitchen sideboards and a generally lived in feel – yet there were other bits which felt like it had been empty for years. I think it must be the combination of uPVC and relatively little vandalism.

Burnt out bungalow

Heading homeward, I took a turn off in the direction of HMP Whitemoor to investigate the area as I’d seen mention of Whitemoor rail sidings and wondered if there was anything left of interest. A mile of so down the road at Rings End Nature Reserve, I came across an old rail sidings and what looked to be an engine shed, which I found quite interesting. My ancestors lived just up the road and a few of them were platelayers on the railway, so it’s probably somewhere they’d be more than familiar with.

It’s a bit of a strange place for it to be if it’s for freight loading or similar, as there’s barely a house to be seen for several miles. I can only assume that the area must have become a lot less populated since it was in use. I spent a while photographing the interior, playing around with long exposures, but the bright sunlight was creeping in through various gaps in the doors and windows, so not quite as successfuly as I’d hoped.

Looking at the later farm shed bolted onto the side, there were several beams with broad cutouts. I studied these for a while, wondering if they were beams from the old track bed.

There was also a small section of platform nearby, with what I presume must have been a signalman’s shed.

One of the pair of old railway cottages at the edge of the track also had an old signal in the gardens, which I thought was a pretty cool thing to have. I’m not a huge railway buff, but some old stuff like this I’m quite interested by.

More pictures…

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