I have a thing about abandoned, derelict, old places…. Something to do with the abandonment, mystery, inaccessibility…last weekend I visited Churchill’s bunker in Neasden, only opened 2 days per year and I got on the last tour of the day with London Open House. And today, a friend shared a quote she had seen in a magazine, which related to the greening up of the area used for the London 2012 Olympics. within the quote it referred to moribund factories and rusting structures (in much more eloquent language). But it opened the floodgates of memory, so I thought I would post a few of my own images of abandoned places…..

factory in Eastern Germany in the early 1990s

old motor racing circuit at Reims in the mid 1990s, before it was smartened up

And military history has plenty of abandoned places, for example this fort (Souville) in the forests of Verdun..


  1. … and what an atmosphere … sadly puts me in mind of a visit to Auschwitz … there’s something about death and decay …

    • Well, dereliction, abandonment and decay, rather than death…I’ve personally never been to any of the concentration camps (and have no desire to do so, because of the human suffering involved). I’m drawn to the history of the places I have seen, but also the atmosphere.
      For me it’s the “one person’s pile of old stones is another person’s romanticism” point of view.

  2. Sandra

    The bunker looks so sad. To think that such an important piece of modern history could be left to rot into that mess. What a shame.

    • Well, the Cabinet War Rooms are well preserved, and the Neasden site was only emergency backup between 1940 and 1943, after which another site was found. I believe there was only one meeting held at Neasden. And at least the site has been saved, albeit not in the best condition…..but that’s part of the allure, in a way. It hasn’t been sanitised….

  3. The emptiness of these places is haunting.

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