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REPORT: 24th February 2008.
Port Mulgrave and Sandsend Line.

I lived in York for six months from November 2007 to May 2008. It was horrible. I was so relieved to get out of the London of the North where everyone looks down their nose at you. Anyway, this was the first of a couple of trips while I was up there. The intention today was to do the tunnels on the line through Sandsend and Kettleness (which John did years ago) and to reccie the Port Mulgrave tunnels prior to dragging John up there another day.

Port Mulgrave is something of a legend to me - can there really be a mile long tram tunnel that comes out half way up a cliff? Well yes, there is. I am writing this in June 2010 and, looking back, I wish I'd just 'got mucky' that day and waded into the mud... Now that I'm off to Australia I may never get another chance. This time, "I'll be back!" may not apply.

The day included:

  1. 'Boulby': Northern-most of the three tramway tunnels (see map). The southern end is/was in the Boulby Mine site which is securely fenced. The other end comes out somewhere between the unclassified road in Boulby and the cliff. I had a scout round but found nothing, it needs a more detailed look when John and I go up (if I ever do now). This was about 400yds long.
  2. 'Ridge Lane': Small bore tram tunnel under Ridge Lane. My reconnaissance here took me to the north portal and, since I was there, it would be rude not to, so I did this one. It is about 400yds long and open for exploration.
  3. Port Mulgrave: 2000yd tramway tunnel with one portal half way up a cliff! Ran out of time to go to the other end but my reccie had served its purpose. I knew we could go to the seeward end and get in. I may never go now...
  4. Kettleness: Nice. A text book tunnel!
  5. Sandsend: Even nicer! Long tunnel with all the elements needed to get the nerves jangling! Water, mud, collapses, curved so you can't see daylight, etc. I was still taking basic snaps then, not having started this site, so my pics are a bit crap.
  6. Ravenscar: This was the darkest tunnel I've ever been to! I mean outside as well as inside. The approach cutting was absolutely black.
  7. Falsgrave: The southern portal is behind an open signalbox. You can get on top of the portal straight from the road. I took a single pic showing the portal totally bricked up. John did this in the 90's when you could just walk through. The north portal is now under Asda! At the time I was there there was a block of flats being built on to p of the tunnel and another in planning. I can't find anythimg about the first but the second was planning application number 08/01977/FL (finally rejected in December 2008). Stick 08/01977/FL in Google for a look at the docs. (Note the apllication to infill the tunnel was submitted by Safeway in 1992, planning number 92/00564/FL.)
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