Tuesday, 7 April 2015

The Globe, and underground

Easter is always a good time of year to get some exploring done, because the bank holidays ensure most local businesses are closed. In the old days we did the rat run during the day on Easter Sunday, knowing that there would be nobody monitoring the cameras on the roof of the shopping centers.
But I fancied something new.
I've had my eyes on a few places here in Shrewsbury, but then I spotted a pub that I had never been to. I made a point last year of going to pubs that I'd never been to in the hopes of expanding my horizons, but this place was completely under my radar. I'd never been there. I'd never heard anyone talk about going there. It had never been recommended to me. But it looked so pretty! It was big, white and blue, and had "The Globe" written above the door with an image of Earth where the "O" was in "Globe."

From the exterior, it was easy to see that this place was run down and abandoned. So I did what came naturally, and slipped inside.

Disclaimer: I do not force entry. I do not disclose means of entry. I do not vandalize, steal, or otherwise harm property that is not mine, and I do not climb on homes. That's just rude. Being legally ambiguous must never come before a moral compass.

So I was disapointed in the sense that there was no bar with a thick layer of dust, or cobwebbed beer taps to photograph. Someone had been working on this place, perhaps converting it into a place to live. I don't know. There was another pub only two doors down so I guess reopening this place was a financial gamble.

The last seats in the building were by the front door. It's interesting to think that at one point these seats were frequently occuped by happy drinkers. I decided to get a closer look at the pattern on the floor by the door.

I assume this will all be covered up or removed at some point.

I'm assuming by the curved ceiling pattern, and faint corresponding mark on the floor that this was once where the bar once was.

And across from that was a pretty expansive area with a fireplace. It was big enough for a pool table, easily.

And that doorway led straight to the toilets. These were surprisingly clean.

I was unable to locate the ladies toilets. There was an empty room that was quite possibly the ladies toilets, but there were no more toilets in there. But then, this isn't "Shrewsburys loos from where you are not" so we'll move on.

The electric meter was also in a cupboard downstairs too.

But I was drawn to the stairs, eager to see what the other floors of this building had to offer.

But there was this little gem quietly tucked away by the stairs.

Somehow I doubt the builders are allowed to bring their teddy bears to work with them like that cop from the Tommyknockers. This little thing must have been left over from the old pub days. I hope it didn't have hidden cameras in its eyes or something.

The upstairs room had clearly once been open to the public, as one could see where seating had once been in the far corner. The wall patterns were of interest.

And also a bricked up window, right next to an actual window. 

I know that back in the day there was a window tax which caused a lot of old places to brick up their windows. But really, if they're going to put new windows in now that we're in an era without window tax, why not just put a window where there had been a window, if you were going to have one in that room anyway.

But anyway, I explored this floor. There were a few other rooms, but without indicators of them being used for drinking back when the place was open. I don't know if the place was lived in as well, but since it was daylight and there were houses across the road who might wonder why an attractive person was loitering in a closed up pub on a bank holiday when nobody else was around, I covered the front rooms reasonably swiftly.

There were two stairways each leading to separate attics, both of which were small but attractive rooms with odd archways in the walls.

The first was just a store room for a lot of wood, and a very dusty light bulb.
The other one contained two smaller doorways, one of which would not open, in contrast to the opposite one, which was wide open. There was minimum mess in this attic.

I poked the camera inside the little open door to see if there was anything in there.

But no pub adventure would be complete without a trip down into the cellar. And this blog wouldn't be the same if I didn't get underground at some point.
But I didn't have high expectations. After all, I've chased a million rumours of underground tunnels and only 10% have ever actually been true, and none of them, not even the 90% untrue ones, have ever contained an obscure pub called The Globe. I went down honestly expecting to see a generic cellar. Maybe with barrels if I was lucky.

As you can see, it's quite expansive, with the typical ledge around the side of the room for storing barrels, none of which remained. 

There's a sink next to the stairs that led down into the cellar. Funnily enough, I could still here water in the pipes, as if it was still being used.

And in the opposite wall, there was what was unmistakably a bricked up doorway. And you know what? The most significant building in the direction this doorway is pointing to is Wakeman School, which is also the source of a few tunnel rumours due to its  proximity with the abbey. This did make me curious, but the door is bricked up so what could I do? Onto room two...

As you can see, we have a large room, with that same little raised platform around the edge, a shelf with a few cleaning products next to a door that I assumed was a fire exit, containing a poster with instructions for manual handling.
But interestingly this door didn't lead anywhere. A passageway went in the direction of the road and then stopped.

Now, you might think that this could have been the loading hatch, but that was actually in the first cellar room, and we'll come to that. This passageway remains a mystery, but it ends right by the road.
But back to the main cellar...

There is another bricked up doorway in the direction of Wakeman school. Very intriguing. Well doesn't this cellar continue to please?
Well, keep in mind the cellar is pitch black, and I was finding my way purely by camera flash, so I can be forgiven for almost missing what came next.

Someone at some point has decided not to let a couple of bricked up doorways stand in the way of discovery, and had just bashed their way through into the great unknown.

But what really baffles me is how there have been no rumours connected to this place. It's in close proximity to the abbey even though the tunnel entrance itself doesn't point at the abbey, and if you're a long time reader of this blog, you know how much I sigh with exasperation at underground tunnels connected to the abbey. Allegedly the Abbey is connected to the castle, the music hall, and frankwell, and probably the Berlin Wall if you speak to the right people. But I've followed these rumours and the strongest clue to there being any underground tunnels connected to the abbey was The Crown, which is right next to it.

So I'm a little disapointed that out of all the rumours of somewhere being connected to the abbey, The Globe was never mentioned, because trust me, the tunnels beneath this place were huge and expansive, and surpassed the foundations of the actual building. I was underneath the neighbouring houses.

On the left, there was this. An obviously blocked up passageway that pointed curiously towards the rver severn. Opposite this was another tunnel. This one passed the width of the pub so was undoubtably once connected to the bricked up doorway in the first cellar room.

It had a very curious wooden handle in the ceiling, next to a light, but this was not connected to a trap door or anything. Maybe it was once, if the tunnels were blocked off so that this part could be a cellar for the house next to the pub. I don't know. Everything is speculative.

But as you can see, there was much more to this than just these two bricked passageways.

A glance back at the way I came, you can see the irregular "door" I'd come through from the pub, and the two passageways pointing in opposite directions.

But the best feature by far was this final bricked up doorway at the end of the tunnel expanse.

I mean, already we'd expanded out beyond the original building, but this was definitive evidence that there was still more that wasn't being seen. It is really not difficult, given the size of the place, to imagine this eventually connecting to the Abbey. Sure, it's not necessarily pointing at the Abbey, but a little further in the direction its heading and a right angle corner will take it straight there. And given that St Mary's Church had confirmed underground tunnels existed to surrounding buildings up until the 1920s, it seems reasonable to assume that the abbey did too.

I didn't stop for long after this. It might sound strange but the atmosphere became suddenly unwelcoming. I can't really explain it. I'm not one for suggesting without question that it was something supernatural. If you believe in that stuff, great. If you don't, that's great too. I don't believe in believing, only in knowing and not knowing, and as far as I was concerned I felt a very sudden and noticable change that made me feel unwelcome, and so I exited swiftly back through the cellar and up into the courtyard through the loading hatch.
It's strange because you'd think if I was going to get this kind of odd feeling it would be somewhere like the caves I explored last time, but they were actually quite calming. Once I was outside, the very idea of going back down into the cellar really chilled me to the core.

But I'm an explorer, and there was a door in the courtyard that I had yet to look behind.

Behind me, the cellar, down a very slippery ramp.

Anyway, that concludes The Globe. If anyone has any pictures of the interior from when it was still open to the public, I'd love to see them, and naturally any revelations regarding the tunnels would be appreciated. Look for me on Facebook! Just join up the name of the blog two words at a time- Shrewsburyfrom Whereyou Arenot. Find me, Add me, we'll be buddies!

And of course, thanks for reading.

1 comment:

  1. I remember going to the globe as a child with my parents, I can confirm the licence holder used to live above with his mother, I'm going back to at least 1997 upstairs was only living quarters. From the front door as you quite rightly said the bar was directly in front of you per marking on the celling and the pool table was in front of the window by the seats remaining, either side of the fire place were domino tables and the dart board was in the lounge area. As you quite rightly pointed out the gents toilets were straight down the passage the ladies were to the right then left. The only thing I remember about the cellar is it always used to flood.
    Thanks for the trip back down memory lane. Unfortunately I don't have any photos of what it looked like back when I remember it :)