Lord Line Building/St Andrew's Docks, Hull, May 2016

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People's Republic of South Yorkshire.
My little mini break in Humberside didn’t yield too much explore-wise what with secca interceptions in Grimsby, closed roads on Spurn Point and demo’ed buildings in Hull. This place has been on my radar for some time. Surprisingly it has had very few reports here on the forum which I can’t quite work out. It’s very substantial and pretty high profile in Hull and is subject to what seems to be monthly reports in the Hull Daily Mail. It’s a place that splits local opinion – some say it’s an eyesore and should be demo’ed. Others say it is a vital part of Hull’s seafaring past. Think I’m with the latter camp.

This and several other buildings that remain used to make up St Andrew’s dock. The Dock opened in 1883 and was originally designed for the coal trade but was used almost exclusively for the fishing industry. The dock had its own ice plant, a maintenance slipway, banks, shops, cafes and even had a post office, a doctor’s surgery and a police station, complete with prison cells. The dock was extended in 1897. The Lord Line building officially opened in 1949 to serve Hull’s trawling industry. The trawlers left for the North Sea and the Norwegian sea. A survey in 1954 said that for every fisherman working at sea there were up to three people working ashore in associated jobs. This totaled almost 50,000 workers or one-in-five of Hull’s population at the time.

The decline started when Iceland declared there would be a 200 mile limit to where trawlers would be able to fish off Iceland itself. It struck a massive blow to the fishing industry. One so significant that the industry never recovered and the dock closed in 1975. Apparently 6,000 men sailed to their deaths at sea in this most dangerous post-war occupation. The filling of the dock itself began in the late 1980s. It has been threatened with demolition but local history groups protested and at present the future of the building is uncertain.

In terms of the explore itself, when I rocked up to the dock there were a number of teenage gangs hanging around. Access to the Lord Line was possible but I thought I would come back the next morning when the coast was clearer. On returning the next day said gangs had gone but in the end caution got the better part of valor. I didn’t really fancy going into such a large and dark maze-like building that was in a bit of a state on my own. Fortunately I had enough decent externals to still merit a report.

The first thing you come to is part of the old dock:

27300790372_4b06e5a35b_b.jpgimg5448 by HughieDW, on Flickr

26792033613_0a368bdc12_b.jpgimg5431 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And the Lord Line Building:

26791680903_a19278d349_b.jpgimg5450 by HughieDW, on Flickr

No doubt as to what the building is called:

27365232896_68bf2dc929_b.jpgimg5449 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27123597370_fc5617d908_b.jpgimg5476 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Some interesting deco style metal windows:

27365711646_7415c5b806_b.jpgimg5428 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27365669176_28ec4619aa_b.jpgimg5429 by HughieDW, on Flickr

A quick peek in where some of the local yobbo’s set fire to the building:

27123479590_0c16040a0e_b.jpgimg5430 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Side-on view:

26791983293_cd9c678280_b.jpgimg5432 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Rear view:

27300987572_daf9a05257_b.jpgimg5433 by HughieDW, on Flickr

26791044214_98a77d3666_b.jpgimg5435 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Windows buckled by a previous fire:

27123386660_023ed01df4_b.jpgimg5434 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27327772581_b5576935e4_b.jpgimg5437 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Quay side view:

27123273150_43dcfb056e_b.jpgimg5438 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Side-on from the quay side:

26790298354_ef4284a43b_b.jpgimg5471 by HughieDW, on Flickr

This place is next to the Lord Line and in a really poor state:

27123040220_fd78c2b3da_b.jpgimg5454 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27364894236_bb833588d9_b.jpgimg5466 by HughieDW, on Flickr

26791421553_a2b687198e_b.jpgimg5465 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27122758610_11aa4c4c70_b.jpgimg5467 by HughieDW, on Flickr

This was probably a water tower.

27398356355_55ba4f20dc_b.jpgimg5470 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Built in 1932, the former insurance building by the quay is quite stylish with its deco touches:

26790673594_3e4a9de88f_b.jpgimg5458 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27365098366_671f6e476b_b.jpgimg5456 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27122922540_b0775248ea_b.jpgimg5459 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27300478642_0278c1f789_b.jpgimg5460 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27398413585_b4a24a9a00_b.jpgimg5469 by HughieDW, on Flickr

27300091672_cf0e982614_b.jpgimg5475 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Thanks for looking!

Hugh Jorgan

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Very nicely done. At one time these were very important buildings linked with shipping but alas they now stand quiet.


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May 13, 2015
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I would have done the same in that situation too Hughie. On the plus side though you managed to get enough shots externally that we can see all the little details, a personal favourite is the one of the insurance building. :)


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Apr 2, 2007
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Lovely set of pics mate, they certainly don't build them like that anymore! :)

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