Eston Mines Walk Saturday July 9th

The will soon be an opportunity to pick the brains of local author and mining expert Simon Chapman.
A Guided Walk to look at the Ironstone Mining Remains at Eston on Saturday 9th July 2011.

Meet in the public car park behind Eston Institute at 10 a.m
We shall look at the Site of Trustee Drift, Old Bank, then across to New Bank before taking the route of the former railway to the S.S. Castle and Wilton Lane
The route is not too steep to the level railway track, but likely to be muddy
Return to the start point possibly around 4 p.m., perhaps
Don’t forget to bring lunch
Simon Chapman

Grangetown Railway Station

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Grangetown Railway Station originally dated from 1885 (when it was named Eston Grange and served that long lost community) The station has been disused since November 1991. The location is actually about 1km from the current Grangetown so its usage probably dropped to nothing when the industury it served closed.

Grangetown Station 

The sizes of the ramps shows the volume of people who must have passed through it.

Grangetown Station  

Grangetown Station 

This rubbish filled subway leads to a set of steps would have gone towards the South Bank IronworksGrangetown Station Subway Grangetown Station Subway

Grangetown Station 

Although most of the station is relatively modern, there are some heavy sandstone blocks alongside the black path which hint at its earlier 1800s incarnation.

Grangetown Station - Black Path 

An internal railway line to the ironworks runs immediately alongside the station.

Grangetown Station 

Grangetown Station 

St Helens Church and East Lodge, Eston

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St Helens Church in Eston was a Grade II listed building, it originated in the 12th Century and was in use until 1962, before becoming a cemetary chapel until 1985. The church was heavily vandalised and by 1987 was ‘in a critical state of disrepair’. A fire followed in December 1992 and during this time the church was being illegally demolished and stonework stolen. Thankfully in 1998 the remains of the church were removed to Beamish who have an excellent set of photos

The church is currently being rebuilt at Beamish as of May 2011.

Nothing remains on the site except a plaque and outline of the church

St Helens Church, Eston St Helens Church, Eston St Helens Church, Eston

The East Lodge of cemetary seems to have suffered a similar fate and it currently completely burned out.

East Lodge, Eston East Lodge, Eston East Lodge, Eston

It is however the subject of a relatively recent planning application, so it may be on the verge of being restored.

Chop Gate ROC Post – Open Day

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The Royal Observer Corps post at Chop Gate has recently been restored and a fantastic job has been made of it, its such a nice change to see a post in good condition rather than being stood in knee deep water with rotting artifacts floating around you.

On the surface the entrance was fitted with its Ground Zero Indicator (GZI) which is a pin-hole camera to record the position of any nuclear bomb bursts.

 Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Ground Zero Indicator  

The ventilation shaft is in great condition with a fresh coat of paint.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker  

The dome for the Fixed Survey Meter was also present, which has normally long since vanished.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Fixed Survey Meter Dome 

A great collection of the kit associated with the post was also on display, such as a set of maroon launchers used to warn the public of fallout.

 Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Maroons 

A hand cranked air-raid siren and generator to charge the posts batteries.

 Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Siren 

Then it was time to get underground !

 Chop Gate ROC Bunker Chop Gate ROC Bunker

Underground the post is in stunning condition.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker Chop Gate ROC Bunker

An early Teletalk and Warning receiver were present as well as their later BT replacements

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - WB400 and Teletalk Unit AD3460 Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Teletalk AD8010

The Bomb Power Indicator is suspended from the roof.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Bomb Power Indicator 

The probe for the Fixed Survey Meter which would be sent up a tube to the dome outside to monitor radiation.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Fixed Survey Meter 

With the old and new versions of the Fixed Survey Meter to actually monitor radiation.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Radiac Indicator Chop Gate ROC Bunker - PDRM82

It was also very nice to see some of the more ephemeral items such as METAR weather report forms, Triangulation calculators and post maps.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Metar Report Chop Gate ROC Bunker

Chop Gate ROC Bunker 

And finally of course the post important piece of equipment in the whole place, the toilet.

Chop Gate ROC Bunker - Toilet 

I can’t compliment this place enough, its great that we now have a local restored post, further information on the restoration and details of future open days can be found on the Attack Warning Red site. Huge amounts of information about the ROC can also be found on numerous sites 1 2 3

NOTE : None of the items in these photographs are stored in the post, it is completely stipped when there’s not an open day in progress.