View Full Version : Sandsend & Kettleness disused railway tunnels, May 2009

04-06-2009, 07:36 PM
Visited along with jb28

Think alot of people are familiar with this one, but it was my first visit of this ol' tunnel.

Bit of background information for those not aware of it:

On 7th July 1873 an Act was passed authorising an amended route with the WRMRU now branching from the Whitby Grosmont line just outside Whitby Town station. The link to the proposed Scarborough line at Larpool Wood was dropped. By 1874 the construction of the railway had stopped and the contractor had gone into liquidation. Two of the
contractors locomotives which had been taken over by the WRMUR were sold. On 1st July 1875 the North Eastern Railway took a perpetual lease over the WRMUR and employed another contractor, John Waddell of Edinburgh, to complete the line with a completion date of 13th July 1881. The WRMUR Act ratified the arrangement on 19th July 1875 and the NER agreed to complete the line in a substantial and satisfactory manner.

The new contractor found the previous work to be unsatisfactory and in the short period whilst work was suspended part of the cliff route north of Sandsend had collapsed into the sea. The new contractors drove the railway through the headlands rather than go round them. Two tunnels were constructed, Sandsend tunnel (1652 yards) and Kettleness tunnel (308 yards);
between them a short stretch of the original course along the cliff edge remains.

We took the route from the south at Sandsend, and made our way up.This popped into view after 15mins:

Inside, a mile's journey into the darkness awaits...

The first airshaft

The sidetunnel runs at this point were the vertical shaft is toohttp://i268.photobucket.com/albums/jj33/moodster020/S1051806.jpg

Looking back from the sidetunnel

2nd airshaft

2nd sideshaft. The fragrance of oily old timber was around here

Looking back to the south at the curve in the tunnel

Mineral deposits

Northernmost shaft rubble

Kettleness tunnel south

Inside Kettleness

The side shaft in Kettleness is Navigable, prompted by a fresh breeze, i hobbled through it...

hastily built brick arch of the refuge

after the first hump

and the second

is the exit, emerges onto the failed 1870's railway trackbed along the cliffedge, a seagull breeding colony now resides here

More at flickr:

& at Youtube:

04-06-2009, 07:41 PM
Wow this looks ace!!

04-06-2009, 08:39 PM
That's a great report, and really nicely lit tunnels too. I like this :thumb

04-06-2009, 10:37 PM
Your pics turned out nice :) I'll get mine up too as soon as I can.

05-06-2009, 12:42 PM
Nice report & good to see some pics of/into the side shafts. :thumb

05-06-2009, 10:44 PM
Cool stuff, fantastic place.:thumb

10-07-2009, 05:06 PM
Great report and a video... love those side shafts... they look really scary

11-07-2009, 12:08 PM
Top work, love the Indiana Jones style mine shafty type bits.

29-10-2009, 02:51 PM
In what's probably the longest gap between people posting photos of the same explore, I've finally got my act together enough to upload my pics.

Not helped, of course, by the fact that all my computery stuff was seized for months by the plod thanks to my batshiat insane ex-employer telling them all sorts of porkies (all sorted now, but the gloves are definitely off - I'm not putting up with that sort of nonsense).

Anyways - here's a selection of my pics from Sandsend and Kettleness. The side tunnel was a real treat, and Moodster020's pics depict it far better than mine.

As you approach the tunnel entrance, you get a fantastic view of Sandsend Bay

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2599/4033524048_8922c4d9c1.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4033524048/)

The tunnel is protected by an easily climbed wall, but the area can be busy and sometimes it's necessary to wait until nobody is passing to gain access

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2481/4033525916_6a9caaefb7.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4033525916/)

Sandsend Tunnel South portal is rather wet at first, but soon dries out

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2750/4033530334_ea2fc5a352.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4033530334/)

There are several air shafts along the tunnels, all of which are capped off. Water pours in making photography difficult

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2744/4032778123_c3f9e5e998.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4032778123/)

There are two side tunnels in Sandsend tunnel, presumably used to transport spoil out to the cliffs and into the sea

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2624/4032779207_ced3f5406a.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4032779207/)

The rest of Sandsend tunnel is dry and easy to traverse

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2633/4032782019_fca3f4571b.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4032782019/)

There's a portal there somewhere!

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2735/4033538886_3d9422e2e5.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4033538886/)

Kettleness tunnel curves significantly from the outset, but is shorter than the South tunnel

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2430/4033542232_e0fd47bdbf.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4033542232/)

Kettleness tunnel has a passable side tunnel, which leads out to a ledge overlooking the sea

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2713/4032790033_1d293d6d85.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4032790033/)

Following the side tunnel from Kettleness tunnel leads you out to a ledge overlooking the sea. It was clear that we were very much off the beaten track here, and wildlife was in abundance, including wild deer on the headland below

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2648/4033544824_e6f2b44ed8.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/71661293@N00/4033544824/)

29-10-2009, 04:14 PM
I like seeing them again as well. Pleasing shots the lot of 'em. :thumb

07-08-2011, 06:24 PM
great shots..
we went to Sandsend today but due to camera failure and a shortage of time we managed to get to the second vent before we turned round....another visit is in order....

07-08-2011, 06:35 PM
This place looks great, would love a snoop around there