Wednesday, 11 July 2012

St Mary's Convent/Westbrook House, Folkestone - Part 2 - July 2012

With a fully charged battery, and a spare this time, I made my return to St Mary's Westbrook School (see here for original visit). This time I took George in tow with me, and made a slightly less conspicuous entrance than before.

Now, I don't want to repeat my shots too much, but there are going to be some similar ones before I get onto the new stuff. Excuse my indulgence.

George is a filmfag.

It wasn't my face that shattered the mirror, honest. 

Down to the basement again...

Having someone more artistically minded was handy for setting up lighting. Also, the P7 rocks.

Although with regards to my previous comment, I believe I had something to do with the lighting on the one above.

Blurry flashy light stuff!

The shot below was an experiment, if we'd have done it at a slightly different angle it would have looked a bit better I think.

Here's where I began exploring what was new to me after my battery had died in the basement last time. There were about four stories including an attic upstairs, but unfortunately most of the rooms, aside from a bit of ceiling collapse, were not that interesting.

George opened a skylight in the attic, and I stuck the camera out of the window (genius) to get this shot.

At this point we'd seen everywhere in the boarding side of the site, now we needed to find our way into the school side. I had a lead of access, which proved to still be open, and we were in the school. Some of it reminded me of Knatchbull:

Photos of comedy knobs aside, we were actually in a race against time here, as the sun was already down, and light was fast fading.

Considering the school has been shut just under four years, I'd say it's quite impressive that the building is growing vegetation already. This area stank of weed too, so I'd say it's pretty safe to say that we weren't the only people who had been in recently.

Unfortunately, as I had been warned, the school building was quite boring. All of the classrooms were empty pretty much, with the only interesting items being left in the attics.

The all important chair shot.

This is the point where George's camera packed up due to light issues, and the torches were becoming more prominent.
This came out horribly, had to play with it a lot.

After covering the upper levels, we made our way down one of the multiple staircases to approach the chapel. Unfortunately, the door to the chapel was not only sealed, but the lock taken clean off of the door with the key tantalisingly lying on the floor next to it.

The final area to explore was the old school hall, complete with a stage, under-stage storage, and a piano.

Unfortunately I didn't focus correctly for this shot. Very annoying.

We made our way to the exit, quickly getting this shot.

There was a quick aside where I had to run back into the first building because I'd left my coat in there! Ended up missing the train too, so that was a bit silly.

In conclusion, it was good to finish the site off, but disappointing at the same time that there wasn't actually that much to see around the school.

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