Fontburn Four-Poster Stone Circle, Northumberland

Fontburn four-poster stone circle near Morpeth in the heart of Northumberland. (Image: Andrew Curtis. Fontburn four-poster stone circle in Northumberland)

Overlooking Fontburn Reservoir in Northumberland, just 10 miles northwest of Morpeth, stands an ancient stone circle that dates back to the Bronze Age. The circle is one of several ancient monuments situated around the 19th century reservoir, and can be reached by a circular path that surrounds the popular fishing spot and nature reserve.

An example of a four-poster circle, the Fontburn stone circle consists – as its name suggests – of four small standing stones. The ‘four-poster’ configuration is relatively common in Scotland and northern England, but less so further south.

Another local example is The Goatstones, which are situated on the rugged upland 2.5 miles north of Hadrian’s Wall in the Wark-on-Tyne parish. The Fontburn four-poster stone circle is decorated with cup marks and a possible ring.

You can find more rock art, including cup and ring carvings which abound across Northumberland, in our feature on the ancient monuments of Neolithic Britain.

Old Meets New at Former Holme Lane Tram Depot, Sheffield

The former Holme Lane tram depot at Hillsborough, now Tramways Medical Centre. (Image: via Google Street View. The former Holme Lane tram depot at Hillsborough)

For the last quarter of a century, Supertram light rail tram cars have cruised the streets of Sheffield, South Yorkshire, transporting some 12.6 million riders annually along three lines serving 48 stations. In the north-west part of the Steel City, Supertram is a regular sight heading along Langsett Road and Middlewood Road toward Hillsborough, and down Holme Lane to Malin Bridge.

It’s a case of old meets new in Holme Lane at the corner of Hillsborough Place, as modern Supertram cars pass by a relic of the city’s original Corporation Tramway. Only the facade remains of the old Holme Lane depot (which closed on April 23, 1954), yet its enough to relate the history of the land beyond (now the Tramways Medical Centre) and add interest to the modern street-scene of today.

Supertram approaches the Malin Bridge terminus today. (Image: P L Chadwick. Supertram approaches Malin Bridge terminus today)

According to Calvin72, posting on the Sheffield History Forum in 2014, “Holme Lane was a horse tram depot for the nearby terminus, however i believe it was substantially rebuilt for the electric era, so may not be the same building at all really.”

Read Next: Subterranean Streetcar: Abandoned Holborn Tramway Station

The Goatstones of Ravensheugh Crags (Northumberland Standing Stones)

The Goatstones ancient monument in Northumberland. (Image: Andrew Curtis. The Goatstones ancient monument in Northumberland)

Situated around 2.5 miles north of Hadrian’s Wall in the Northumberland parish of Wark-on-Tyne, The Goatstones occupy a patch of rugged, windswept upland near the edge of Ravensheugh Crags. Lonely and enigmatic, these standing stones are less than a metre high and a spaced about four metres apart. They’re classified as a four-poster stone circle due to their number and arrangement, and date back to the Bronze Age.

There’s evidence of a low mound and the remains of a stone cairn at the centre of The Goatstones, which may have been used for ancient burials and likely dates to a different period of prehistory than the stone circle itself. Four-poster circles are common in Scotland and relatively so in northern England, but less common further south, as well as in Ireland and Wales.

The Goatstones Bronze Age stone circle on Ravensheugh Crags, Northumberland. (Image: Les Hull. The Goatstones on Ravensheugh Crags)

Like the Fontburn stone circle, also in Northumberland, The Goatstones (understood to be derived from an old Saxon word “gyet stanes”, or “wayside stones”) bear evidence of ancient rock art including cup marks and other carved grooves. The site is now a scheduled ancient monument, and can easily be visited from the nearby Ward Lane (location here). Just be sure to wrap up, because the wind can be bracing in these parts.

Read Next: 10 Historic Landmarks of the Neolithic British Isles

Sunbridge Wells: Bradford Retail Quarter Inside 13th Century Tunnels (Tours Available)

Sunbridge Wells: Bradford's new retail quarter housed inside 13th century tunnels that began life as a quarry. (Image: Basil Parylo. Sunbridge Wells retail quarter in Bradford’s 13th century tunnels)

When it comes to modern city centre development projects, Sunbridge Wells in the heart of Bradford, West Yorkshire, must be one of the most visionary. Occupying medieval tunnels that have their roots in a 13th century quarry, the leisure and retail facility opened last year after a £1.9 million project to breathe new life into its 24,000 square feet.

Bradford's Sunbridge Wells redevelopment. (Image: Basil Parylo)

Over the years the three storeys of subterranean tunnel network have been used as prison cells and an air raid shelter during World War Two, as Luftwaffe bombs rained down on the industrial cities of northern England.

Sunbridge Wells: adaptive reuse of subterranean space in Bradford, West Yorkshire. (Image: Basil Parylo)

The Sunbridge Wells tunnels are perhaps best known for their role as a 1960s nightclub named The Little Fat Black Pussycat, which was owned by professional wrestler Shirley Crabtree, who older audiences many remember by his stage name Big Daddy.

(Image: Basil Parylo)

When the nightclub eventually closed, the underground space was sealed off and forgotten about for almost half a century, until developer Graham Hall came up with the idea of renovating the tunnels some 28 years ago. Thanks to his vision, an important part of Bradford’s history can now be explored and enjoyed by the public.

(Image: Basil Parylo)

Hall told ITV News: “Well I hope it increases the footfall into Bradford, i.e. the night life, and it’s not just this place, the other bars will succeed better because of this because there’s more places to come into Bradford. We’re not in competition, we’re all working together, that’s basically it.”

Sunbridge Wells has been used as a prison over the centuries and later became a wartime air raid shelter. (Image: Basil Parylo. Sunbridge Wells has been used as a prison over the years)

The mammoth adaptive reuse project required the removal of hundreds of tonnes of rubble before work could begin on transforming it into boutique shops and bars. The Sunbridge Wells development, which is accessed via an arched entrance in Millergate, is also home to a craft ale pub called the Rose and Crown.

(Images: Basil Parylo)

The stone-lined tunnels and stairwells have a Victorian feel with displays by the Bradford Museums and Art Galleries. The image below shows the discrete entrance (unless you take into account the octopus) to Sunbridge Wells as it was before redevelopment. Now clean, the masonry bears a sign welcoming customers “to the world of pure imagination”.

(Image: Google Street View; entrance to Sunbridge Wells, in Millergate, during redevelopment)

Basil Parylo, whose photographs are featured in this article, also runs history tours of the Sunbridge Wells tunnels. The next tour will take place today from 2-4 pm. Find out more here.

Read Next: The Strange Tale of New York City�™s Forgotten Cow Tunnels

Forgotten Railway Crossing in Salamander Place, Leith

The abandoned level crossing in Salamander Place, Edinburgh (Images: Urban Ghosts. The abandoned level crossing in Salamander Place, Edinburgh)

Set into the storied cobbles of Edinburgh‘s Salamander Place, a short stretch of forgotten railway lines echoes the rich history of railway activity around Leith’s 19th century docks.

The line, which was built by the Caledonian Railway company during the Victorian era, carried freight trains over a level crossing to the Leith East goods depot.

Disused railway track in Salamander Place, Leith

The goods yard was closed in 1973 and much of the line was later pulled up. The isolated stretch of track across Salamander Place is all that remains of that level crossing.

Though an active railway still flows into Leith docks on the other side of the adjacent Salamander Street, a plethora of disused lines reveals how extensive the Leith railway network once was.

Salamander Place, Edinburgh

A notable example can be seen near the Shore, where abandoned rail tracks have been preserved like time capsules amid the bustling restaurants that occupy former industrial buildings behind Commercial Street. Check out RailScot for a more detailed history of the Leith New Lines.

Salamander Place, Leith

Read Next: Telfer Subway: Sealed Pedestrian Passageway to Abandoned Dalry Road Station

Adaptive Reuse Proposals for LA’s Fashion District

Adaptive reuse in downtown Los Angeles' historic Fashion District.(Image: Google Street View. Adaptive reuse proposed for LA Fashion District building)

Let’s return to one of our favourite subjects: adaptive reuse – the process of reusing old (sometimes abandoned) buildings or sites for new purposes, while preserving their history and, by extension, the unique character of the broader cityscape around them. And that’s not to mention the environmental benefits of such a practice.

A new adaptive reuse project may soon create around 60 residential and commercial units to downtown LA’s Fashion District; an area where, as Curbed Los Angeles reported last month, “something of a development boom seems to be quietly getting under way.”

Situated on South Towne Ave to the south of the infamous Skid Row, the four-storey industrial building at the heart of the proposals was built in 1927 and currently houses a convenience store and textile businesses. Proposals call for the ground floor to be retained as commercial space while the upper storeys would be turned into small live-work units.

The proposal is one of several plans put forward to rejuvenate the historic Fashion District, including a major redevelopment of the Southern California Flower Market. Hat tip: Curbed LA.

Read Next: Arizona: Adaptive Reuse at Centre of Tucson Redevelopment

The post Adaptive Reuse Proposals for LA’s Fashion District appeared first on Urban Ghosts Media.

Adaptive Reuse Proposals for LA’s Fashion District

Adaptive reuse in downtown Los Angeles' historic Fashion District. (Image: Google Street View. Adaptive reuse proposed for LA Fashion District building)

Let’s return to one of our favourite subjects: adaptive reuse – the process of reusing old (sometimes abandoned) buildings or sites for new purposes, while preserving their history and, by extension, the unique character of the broader cityscape around them. And that’s not to mention the environmental benefits of such a practice.

A new adaptive reuse project may soon create around 60 residential and commercial units to downtown LA’s Fashion District; an area where, as Curbed Los Angeles reported last month, “something of a development boom seems to be quietly getting under way.”

Situated on South Towne Ave to the south of the infamous Skid Row, the four-storey industrial building at the heart of the proposals was built in 1927 and currently houses a convenience store and textile businesses. Proposals call for the ground floor to be retained as commercial space while the upper storeys would be turned into small live-work units.

The proposal is one of several plans put forward to rejuvenate the historic Fashion District, including a major redevelopment of the Southern California Flower Market. Hat tip: Curbed LA.

Read Next: Arizona: Adaptive Reuse at Centre of Tucson Redevelopment

Ride London’s Historic Post Office Railway (Mail Rail)

Mail Rail: book your tickets to ride London's preserved Post Office Railway.(Image: cakehole. Mail Rail: ride London’s preserved Post Office Railway)

It’s one of subterranean London’s most unusual abandoned places. The Post Office Railway, also known as Mail Rail, spans 6.5 miles of deserted tunnel beneath the streets of England’s bustling capital. Originally opened in 1927, the line served eight stations on its route between Whitechapel and the Paddington Sorting Office, and was well maintained after closing down in 2003.

As of today, visitors can descend deep beneath the city streets and take a 20 minute ride on the historic Mail Rail’s miniature trains. The tour is open every day except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, and the last train leaves at 4:30 pm.

Ride Mail Rail at The Postal Museum from The Postal Museum on Vimeo.

(Images: cakehole)

From the Postal Museum website:

Descend into the former engineering depot of Mail Rail – the one hundred year old Post Office railway – board a miniature train and descend into the stalactite-filled tunnels.

Pass deep below Royal Mail’s Mount Pleasant sorting office, see the original and largely unchanged station platforms and be transported back in time. Take in a theatrical experience that peels back the layers of time to the railway’s lively 1930s heyday.

See and hear the people who worked on it, experience their lives below ground and glimpse hidden parts of the railway that kept the mail coursing through London for 22 hours every day.

(Images: cakehole)

This is exciting news for those fascinated by transportation history and those often little-known subterranean spaces that lie hidden beneath our feet, and in some cases become the stuff of folklore and urban legend. Book your ticket here.

The post Ride London’s Historic Post Office Railway (Mail Rail) appeared first on Urban Ghosts Media.

Ride London’s Historic Post Office Railway (Mail Rail)

Mail Rail: book your tickets to ride London's preserved Post Office Railway. (Image: cakehole. Mail Rail: ride London’s preserved Post Office Railway)

It’s one of subterranean London’s most unusual abandoned places. The Post Office Railway, also known as Mail Rail, spans 6.5 miles of deserted tunnel beneath the streets of England’s bustling capital. Originally opened in 1927, the line served eight stations on its route between Whitechapel and the Paddington Sorting Office, and was well maintained after closing down in 2003.

As of today, visitors can descend deep beneath the city streets and take a 20 minute ride on the historic Mail Rail’s miniature trains. The tour is open every day except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, and the last train leaves at 4:30 pm.

Ride Mail Rail at The Postal Museum from The Postal Museum on Vimeo.

(Images: cakehole)

From the Postal Museum website:

Descend into the former engineering depot of Mail Rail �“ the one hundred year old Post Office railway �“ board a miniature train and descend into the stalactite-filled tunnels.

Pass deep below Royal Mail�™s Mount Pleasant sorting office, see the original and largely unchanged station platforms and be transported back in time. Take in a theatrical experience that peels back the layers of time to the railway�™s lively 1930s heyday.

See and hear the people who worked on it, experience their lives below ground and glimpse hidden parts of the railway that kept the mail coursing through London for 22 hours every day.

(Images: cakehole)

This is exciting news for those fascinated by transportation history and those often little-known subterranean spaces that lie hidden beneath our feet, and in some cases become the stuff of folklore and urban legend. Book your ticket here.

Ironbound Stadium: Abandoned Football Arena Finally Refurbished

New lease on life for abandoned Ironbound Stadium in Newark, New Jersey (Image: Rachel Fawn via Untapped Cities. Ironbound Stadium in Newark, New Jersey)

Our friends at Untapped Cities recently featured the long-abandoned Ironbound Stadium, which has been closed since 1987 and is now undergoing a major refurbishment. Check out the full video below.

From the website: “Located on 26 Saint Charles Street in Newark, New Jersey, the football arena had fallen to a state of decay, until city officials, in partnership with chemicals company Celanese, agreed on terms to clean up the contaminated site in 2015.”

Ironbound Stadium in Newark, New Jersey (Image: Rachel Fawn via Untapped Cities)

“The decision came nearly 30 years after the field was shut down in 1987, when toxic levels of PCBs and other chemicals were discovered by workers at the corner of St. Charles Street and Rome Street in the early 1980�™s.”

The terraces of Ironbound football stadium in NJ (Image: Rachel Fawn via Untapped Cities)

Visit Untapped Cities to find out more, and be sure to check out our roundup of abandoned sports arenas and forgotten rugby grounds.