#14 – Explore #4 of the UK Road Trip – Wasted at St Joseph’s Seminary
This explore is by far my best yet, It involved so many highs that I think it may take a while to beat. Well at least until I get to visit Belgium anyway.
Before this one, we had a few failures including Katie’s House which I really want to get back to at some point, so we were really hoping that this one would deliver, and it did.
The previous evening myself, Urbanographer and Adam X decided to have a few beers, watch some singing, play some pool and fail to get served walking through a McDonald’s drive through in the torrential rain. I swear at one point we nearly sacked the idea of getting up at 3am for St Joes. An idea that would have been a really really bad one.
We carried on walking through the un-nerving Manchester roads, and made our way into the nearest Kebaby, got chatting to somebody who looked like he had just had ten rounds with Mike Tyson, ate our food and then made it back to our hotel, well I say the word hotel here very loosely. I won’t go into great detail here about that because we certainly got what we paid for (I think around £2.50 each is exactly what we paid). After pounding on our bedroom door for what seemed like an hour, Carrot in Motion finally decided to let myself and Adam in, Urbanographer went back to his 4* luxury room with double bed.
I got awoken at around 3:00am (3 hours after getting to sleep) by Adam X’s alarm and genuinely can’t remember much more until we were driving down a road somewhere close to St Josephs when we had to stop, The raging wind and rain had been so bad that a tree had fallen right across the road we needed to get down. After talking to a few locals (who were in their pyjamas) we turned around and followed the Sat Nav down another route.
We finally made it to our parking place, when a car pulled up behind ours, a bit odd we thought but we carried on, In the other car were other explorers who obviously had the same place to park in mind.
I was so tired and really could have slept in the car and waited for the others, A major mistake that would have been.
Access was by no means easy, and the heavy rain did not help us or stop us. The looks on all of our faces was a picture after we had all made it safely but soaking wet into St Joseph’s.
Sometimes when you go into these places you want to get a feel for the place, maybe have a look around a bit before you get your camera out, St Joe’s was not one of these places, and it was only a few minutes when we were greeted by the staircase.
We had a little climb to the top, but then heard noises and thought that our visit was going to be brought to an abrupt end. We stayed at the top for a few minutes, the noises stopped so we made our way back down.
Some major structural damage was just around the corner.
We could still hear footsteps behind us but decided to carry on, ducking underneath a door and through a small hole we made our way to the bedroom area.
I took a couple of similar shots in what was called “The librarian’s room”
If you look closely here you can see the remains of a rat on the window cill.
This place was full of huge corridors, and awesome decor.
As a kid I used to watch a program called Knightmare, every room in St Joe’s reminded me of being the Dungeoneer walking through derelict rooms, side-stepping to the left, and maybe falling through a huge pit to my death.
The next picture is of the colourful Chapel. I wish I had taken the time to get a close up of that stained glass window.
A few pictures in the area near the chapel.
I had one corrupt file from all my photos on my SD card, and I have now realised that it must have been the one of the snooker room, as I don’t appear to have one. On the snooker table were a few Scrabble letters, I used the opportunity to “tag” the table, I would like to thank Russell Key for the following photograph, he found this when he visited after us.
After leaving the snooker room I came across this staircase.
The room at the top of these steps had a very colourful ceiling.
On our way to the dormitory’s
An old organ, amongst other items.
We are about to walk into the Dorm room but we see a few people that are already there, We immediately think its security, and hang back for a while. We then notice that it is in fact another group of explorers that end up being Abandoned Yorkshire. They had come in behind us but worked their way around the building the other way. It was good to meet you guys.
And now for the decay, these rooms on the top floor were very decayed, I like the way that nature has taken over these rooms.
As we were exploring the rooms we noticed what may be our way onto the roof. If we could get on to the roof of St Joseph’s that would have made our day.
From up here we could see the Chapel. We had heard that if we even tried to go near this place the PIRs would detect us and the infamous alarm would sound. We had already got the photographs that we wanted from inside, We had also gained access to the roof, If we tried the chapel and got caught it really wouldn’t have been the end of the world.
Check out these views, Below you can see the observatory in the corner. We were not able to access this area.
So did we try to access the Chapel??
Ofcourse we did.
We made our way through more corridors, and we all got a shot of the reflections.
We knew that as soon as we went through this door, an almighty alarm would sound and we would be escorted offsite, By this point we were all knackered and didn’t really want to leave via the way we had come in, so we went for it.
No alarm, Had we got away with it? We carried on shooting.
Still no alarm. We had heard from previous visitors that we would not get into the chapel without hearing it.
We decided that we still hadn’t got enough shots, and decided to find a way up to the organ.
Mission accomplished.. We made our way back down into the corridor and then we heard it. In fact I think the whole of Lancashire heard it. The most ear-piercing, loudest shriek of an alarm we would ever hear.
We waited in a nearby room for security to come and get us.
and we waited, and waited, the alarm went off and nobody came.
We decided to try and find another way out of St Joes. I had already packed away my camera so took the following shots on my Samsung S4 Mini.
Some really cool looking back to back sinks.
We were walking down the corridor when we heard the sound of a barking dog and security.
We had finally been caught, we were actually quite happy, and we were marched out of the front door.
The security guy was actually really nice, as was the Policeman who took our details. We were charged with “Crimes against photography” according to Urbanographer, and we made our way to the nearest McDonalds to celebrate.
I got these shots on the way out.
Thank you for reading this, and I really look forward to your comments.