Long Clawson Railway Tunnel, Leicestershire, February 2017

Help Support Derelict Places:

HughieD

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2013
Messages
5,401
Reaction score
10,832
Location
People's Republic of South Yorkshire.
1. The History
Great Northern and Midland railways securing Parliamentary approval for a new railway line from Newark to Melton Mowbray in 1872. The following year, a further section was authorised, extending the route south-wards to meet the Rugby-Luffenham line. The result was GN and L&NW came together to construct a 34-mile north-south Joint Line between Welham and Bottesford. The line finally became operational on 15th December 1879.

Two tunnels had to be completed to make the new link. At 834 yards in length, the longer of the two tunnels was the one located just south of Long Clawson Station, officially named Hose tunnel. Benton & Woodiwiss were contracted to build the tunnel. Tragically on the evening of Saturday 14th October 1876 three men lost their lives while working on the tunnel’s construction. They were at one of the construction shafts at the northern end of the tunnel. The eight-man gang were working at the Bottesford face of the heading blasting through the hard clay at a rate of approximately one yard per day. Blasting operations usually took place twice during each of the two daily shifts. At 9.30, by the light of three candles, Samuel Longman attempted to charge a hole with gunpowder. He managed to strike his container against some projecting earth, scattered the gunpowder on the floor. It was ignited by one of the candles causing the 8lbs of gunpowder to explode. He and his two co-workers died. Tragedy struck again on 26th June 1878 when a young brakes-man was killed when he was run over by a wagon, 200 yards into the tunnel.

Once regular passenger services were introduced along the route, they were never well patronized. They ceased in December 1953 but goods traffic continued until the section was closed in September 1964.

2. The Explore
Relaxed mooch this one. Just up the road from Lion Brick Works in Scalford, really should have taken this place in when I explored the works last time I was over this way. Parking up on Landyke Road, I approached the tunnel from the south. Access was easy but the turf was a bit on the sodden side! Again pushed for time, I didn’t walk the full length of the tunnel and hence missed out on seeing the impressive north entrance of the tunnel. The tunnel itself is in good nick and very clean and dry on the inside. Definitely work and hour of my time on a relatively mild February afternoon.

3. The Pictures
My quarry comes into sight:

33070176596_288f6a47ed_b.jpg img8909 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Nature’s Heras Fence!

33111877685_1d0f93e8ac_b.jpg img8910 by HughieDW, on Flickr

32296223433_891ebc0046_b.jpg img8911 by HughieDW, on Flickr

In we go:

32984897731_6b8410ae91_b.jpg img8915 by HughieDW, on Flickr

32956165672_d8edc001e1_b.jpg img8953 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Light at the end of the proverbial…

33111935005_aeb3b88ef8_b.jpg img8925 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Refuge hole;

32296168743_39a849d15c_b.jpg img8917 by HughieDW, on Flickr

32955384002_dfdb8c5161_b.jpg img8921 by HughieDW, on Flickr

32729273730_93c19be9be_b.jpg img8924 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Leaching through the tunnel wall…

32296795383_25bfacbe8e_b.jpg img8928 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Those infamous stored chicken shacks:

33070702546_a5e352ba6d_b.jpg img8929 by HughieDW, on Flickr

32956085832_24cb7e050f_b.jpg img8930 by HughieDW, on Flickr

An exposed underground spring;

33070648346_cde65885d0_b.jpg img8937 by HughieDW, on Flickr

The 650-yard mark:

32985476711_ac5557f3c5_b.jpg img8939 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Another refuge:

32267005214_2029a826e9_b.jpg img8947 by HughieDW, on Flickr

No sun in the tunnel but The Sun:

32729809680_142dd25782_b.jpg img8948 by HughieDW, on Flickr

32955880852_25a4a989c8_b.jpg img8950 by HughieDW, on Flickr
 

fluffy5518

Veteran Member
Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2008
Messages
874
Reaction score
1,015
Location
Didcot
Wonder why the patch of yellow paint on the wall in pic 8 ?
Definitely worth a mooch - Nice pics H !!
 

smiler

Veteran Member
Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
4,859
Reaction score
3,400
Location
Lost in Cornwall
Shame you didn't have the time to finish it,gives you the excuse to go back though, you got great pics, the chicken cages were a surprise, could be poultry rustlers hiding the evidence, I enjoyed it, Thanks
 

Black Shuck

Veteran Member
Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 25, 2008
Messages
3,466
Reaction score
1,597
Location
gt yarmouth
Great tunnel this, walked it myself Hughie back in 2010. Good to see it hasn't suffered from portal gates like so many of the others have. How the hell did you light it up so well?
 

HughieD

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2013
Messages
5,401
Reaction score
10,832
Location
People's Republic of South Yorkshire.
Great tunnel this, walked it myself Hughie back in 2010. Good to see it hasn't suffered from portal gates like so many of the others have. How the hell did you light it up so well?

Two really powerful torches mate. Before I had just the one and it took twice as long!
 

prettyvacant71

Veteran Member
Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 1, 2012
Messages
1,701
Reaction score
1,853
Location
braintree
Great little bit of history there thanks! Just love big brick structures:)

An interest in dereliction, no batteries in me torch AND a GCSE in maths!! Im fooked!!:p
 

The Wombat

Veteran Member
Veteran Member
Joined
Mar 16, 2013
Messages
1,689
Reaction score
2,707
Location
Leicestershire
This is an old favourite of mine.
When you return, make sure you visit the north portal, it is impressive

Excellent photos mate - you are certainly getting good at the underground long exposure thing!
 

HughieD

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2013
Messages
5,401
Reaction score
10,832
Location
People's Republic of South Yorkshire.
This is an old favourite of mine.
When you return, make sure you visit the north portal, it is impressive

Excellent photos mate - you are certainly getting good at the underground long exposure thing!

Cheers mate. It's the wide angle lense I think. It's a really long tunnel and just ran out of time so didn't get to the other end!
 

RedOctober

New member
Joined
May 17, 2022
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Great tunnel this, walked it myself Hughie back in 2010. Good to see it hasn't suffered from portal gates like so many of the others have. How the hell did you light it up so well?
Sadly both the north & south entrance are now adorned with gates ☹️
 

RedOctober

New member
Joined
May 17, 2022
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Climbable or not, with suitable step ladders? The refuges remind me of those in Box Tunnel.
Not climbable. There is a narrow grill above the gates to allow bats to leave and enter. You’d have to be better than Houdini to get through them!
 

Hayman

Well-known member
Joined
May 14, 2018
Messages
574
Reaction score
385
Not climbable. There is a narrow grill above the gates to allow bats to leave and enter. You’d have to be better than Houdini to get through them!
I presume there is a padlock on the gates. Knowing the ingenuity of most urban explorers, making a key to open the padlock should not be difficult. As a schoolboy I made a key to open the locked doors between the coaches of our two-coach branch line train, so the boys could get into the girls' coach!
 
Top