Friday, 31 January 2014

Shrewsbury's abandoned gym

The majority of people never even knew this place existed. For years I kept the location and method of access a secret, due to the fact that it was relatively easy to get to and I did not want the place to end up contaminated and vandalized, and turned into a drug den. However, times have changed. It can no longer be accessed, which means it's safe to blog about.

If one heads down to KFC, and crosses the street and the carpark behind Claremont Church, looking up at the back of Argos one should see a terrifyingly rotten wooden staircase. One day, we decided that we were going to find a way there. But to get there, we had to poke around a construction site, that has since been completed and blocked off access to the staircase completely.

Construction site pictures (Taken with a phone, so low quality)-

(Note- Construction sites are dangerous. Even if you do explore without the intentions of vandalism, going through a construction site is stupid. Workers at construction sites wear special clothing for a reason. Buildings are unsafe, and cables and wires may be exposed, and there may even be big gigantic holes that you'll never get out of. I explored this construction site with knowledge of these risks and therefore I was responsible for any harm that could have come to me. If you want to poke around a construction site at night, do so under the same mindset. Don't blame anyone but yourself if something bad should happen.)

 Pictured here, one of those holes I mentioned people could fall down, and next to it a nice pile of loose bricks one could instinctively grab for while falling, causing the lot to topple on ones head. Seriously, don't mess around in construction sites.

Once this has been navigated through, we emerged beneath the wooden staircase, with a certain feeling of elation. The part where we could have been caught was now behind us. Ahead of us stood the rickety old staircase. Which didn't make the situation any less dangerous than when we were in the construction site. This thing was ready to collapse, and if it had we would have plummeted down to the floor below and never been found.

But once that was over with, we found ourselves on the roof of Argos, and that was actually okay. It wasn't too challenging to get to and it wasn't high up. But it was pleasant.

The adventure didn't stop here though. Next door to Argos is Bodycare, and that building is actually taller than Argos, so we could see inside it. And to our delight, the upper stories above Bodycare were empty and abandoned. There was an open window, but that was on the story below. So we did the craziest thing we could think of, which was to go home and build a rope ladder. It was utterly bonkers and not recommended. Rope ladders are not how people imagine them. Even against the wall we were dangling it over, it still swung under the weight of people on it. This caused a natural adrenaline rush and panic that just made it worse. It also twisted in places and was incredibly difficult to climb down.
However, it did hold our weight. We never used it again though, due to the fact that being anywhere with a rope ladder is suspicious and hints at far more malicious intentions. This area did remain a treasure for urban explorers in Shrewsbury though, as once in we made sure to open a window on the upper level, to allow access without the rope ladder.

Pictures of the Abandoned Gym-

So that's the abandoned gym. At least I assume it was a gym based on the fact that Future Physique was written on things.  No doubt the big hook hanging from the upper floor was used to lift  gym equipment up and the shower room hints at an abundance of sweat. And yet nobody seems to recall it being here. I don't know how long it's been empty for but what it was remains a big mystery.

A staircase led down to a door next to Bodycare that led onto the street. And from that I learned quite swiftly that one could come and go as he pleased from doorways that led onto the street, just as long as one looked like he knew what he was doing. Nobody questions it and simply assumed we were meant to be there. This came in very useful for later exploring where I hid in plain sight. But that's another story.


  1. Great pics of the gym luke.....I have been dying to see what it looked like now.It was a great gym.Brill photos.

    1. Did you know it when it was open to the public? Excellent. I've only lived in Shrewsbury for five years so I've always known it to be empty.

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