Monday, 23 February 2015

Ruhrpott, Germany - February 2015

February, a hastily concocted trip saw Cregg and I flying out to Düsseldorf on a whim to meet up with Geo & Jemma who were already out in Europe and to visit our German friends Pierre, Becci and Marcel. 

As always, the hospitality was excellent, as were the buildings we visited and I don't believe appear on the internet elsewhere. Again, research pays. 


Having a penchant for the Ruhr's mining heritage and the way the Germans designed their facilities meant that we made a bee line for one of the most recently abandoned coal mines over there. Derphuize had travelled to Germany specifically to see one of the Kaue rooms and the one here didn't disappoint.


Not quite as large as the one at another nearby mine that we saw last year, but still nicely appointed. Link to the other mine here:



This mine had the oddest headstock I've ever seen with a massive integrated cantilevered coal washery effectively bolted onto the outside of the immense 85m tall winding tower. The facility was never finished nor was it ever populated with the washery machinery and is now left as a big empty dark room full of pigeons and a ropey as fuck staircase.

Pressing on upwards past many barriers designed to stop people reaching the winding machinery at the +85m level, we finally came upon the completely intact Siemens & EPR winder and single control booth, reyt nice.





A breather and some fizzy apple juice later we made our descent and headed towards this delicious prison via a local wurst smothered in curry sauce.


Probably around 100 years old and out of use since 2006 it was again unmolested, full of prisoner graffiti and personal items.







These futuristic, robot-esque guard towers straddled the original walls of the prison allowing the guards a 360 degree field of view/fire over both inside and outside the walls. Signage within the towers gave instruction to shoot at legs first in case of serious rioting.


An afternoon here with pretty much the run of the complex and a working tannoy provided a multitude of lols.



Time to make our way back towards the uk via a breakfast visit to a powerstation known as Ohm or Ω.


Bathed in crisp sunshine, this is now some sort of event space where they've retained the turbines and control panels as features, most interesting and a welcome end to a short trip.


As always, further detailed blog posts to come soon.

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