Yorkshire Martyrs Catholic College was the last of our FOUR successes when we had our last ALL DAY Urbex trip to Bradford, West Yorkshire, now a couple of months ago.
For @goblinknackers, it was also the finest as he used to go to the school right next to this one, and according to him ‘the snobby kids' went to this Catholic one next door.
From what I can gather, the school was built around 1960 and closed its doors in August 2010. It has suffered from several arson attacks, is in a bad state of disrepair, but has not been completely burnt out.
Gaining access was interesting, to say the least and just required some dedication and tenacity, but that’s all you’re getting from me.
Once inside the grounds, we started walking toward the wreck that used to be a school only to see a car approaching. I was thinking to duck in the bushes but the driver had obviously seen us.
The car pulled up and an exasperated middle-aged woman opened the driver's window.
There was no, 'Hello, happy people, welcome to our burned school, the last bastion of the Urban Explorer', ... No, it was straight down to business.
‘How do you get past security’, she screeched, foam and spittle seeping from the sides of her mouth.
I stalled only to be rescued by @mender1's comforting cheery voice..., ‘Hello Love’.
It didn’t break the ice one little bit and the exasperated foaming one looked like she was going to explode until @goblinknackers innocently chirped in, ‘What security? we just moved the fence and came in’.
Exasperated foamer shook her head, muttered some profanity and drove off in a huge huff like a rebuffed lover.
‘Let’s leave’, said @mender1, always the cautious one.
Bollocks to that I thought, the worst that could happen was four burly ex-cops with rottweilers trained to kill could hunt us down like animals (below).
It took some baiting to get a shot of this mild-mannered hound angry, I tell you!
I was up for a little ‘Hunger Games' that day after the hassle we had getting past that stupid fence. Oops, I'm not supposed to tell you that part, am I?
No, we were not leaving, until we were forced out, or simply told, ‘Leave or we will call the cops and have you removed’.
Gaining access from here was as easy as it comes. We walked through some separate buildings that had been partially burnt and approached the main school.
There was still plenty of evidence of school posters and books knocking about, and glass, lots of it. I mean every step was crunch, crunch crunch.
You get that feeling that you’re alone and start using your ears more than usual. Silence; even though you know they are there somewhere.
I know this happened to more than one of us, fortunately for only a short period of time. The school was enormous inside and we didn’t even go upstairs.
It was not noon as the clock indicates. The light gave off some eerie looking effects.
The reflection in the smashed glass is @mender1, though he looks like an iconic murderous horror movie star with a knife poised to strike in his right hand.
We went from room to room through what was a veritable maze and eventually found the swimming pool. @mender1 was doing his fancy light photography here with the shutter open and a tripod when I heard noises.
We were not alone, and it sounded like teenagers. The situation was getting a little hairy; I really don’t like gangs of teenagers.
There used to be a diving board here, but it had been ripped away and thrown down into the pool depths.
Moving through the school, we found what looked like the assembly hall.
There was a surprising lack of graffiti, just some here and in the swimming pool.
This shot of these doors struck me as especially creepy. There was no turning back and there was no way in hell I would come here alone.
More rooms with students work in followed after that, and the increasing noise of the wild feral teenagers was starting to disturb me.
-- Why wasn’t ‘exasperated foamer’ having a go at them? --
Images were starting to form in my head like a scene from ‘Lord of the Flies’, except the adults would be the prey.
I had a premonition of my life ending, tied up, having cigarette’s poked into my eyes, my fingernails torn off one by one before being gutted and boiled alive for that evening’s feast of @slobberchops stew.
With this in mind, we back-tracked and tried to find the room we entered in via the window.
Where the hell was it?
After some searching and scrambling around, the room was suddenly upon us and we hastened for the exit.
Jumping audaciously through the window we spotted the teen gang on the second floor trying to hide from us and doing a rather poor job of it.
We pretended that we hadn’t seen them and re-entered the burnt outbuildings again for some parting shots.
This was probably the creepiest, scariest one I have done so far. I like to feel there is nobody else about when doing an Urbex and that was part of it.
Teenagers in gangs are intimidating bastards, even though they appeared as afraid of us as we were of them. There was no hounding, swearing or throwing of bricks when they spotted us.
Maybe I’m getting too damn paranoid in my old age. There was a lot more to Yorkshire Martyrs Catholic College than we saw that day, but by the time we left, I felt like I had had enough.
--> All photographs were taken by myself <--
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