The End of Week Two with the Biggest BANG in the UK!

Post 98, 14 January 2017, 1,000 Mike Walk Challenge 2017, week two. 

After a week of attending a birthday celebration for my 94 year old mother and baby sitting for my 3 year old and 11 month old grandsons I decided to have a final walk (it could have been literarily my final ever walk)  in the Midlands to return to Yorkshire with a big bang. I had managed a few short walks in the week and they were posted directly to my Facebook Page: The Secret Diaries of a Long-distance Walker. 

Arriving at the Staffordshire County Council Car park just below the village of Hanbury, I ascended the edge of what looked like the rim of a volcano. My walk to the Fauld Crater began proper at the Cock Inn. We have had some very good ‘home cooked’ meals there.

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I thought this would be a fairly easy walk and only had approach shoes on. It was quite a muddy, tricky and steep descent into the bottom of a big hole on a Public Right of Way. Given that this is the site of the largest explosion ever in the UK I couldn’t help but wonder if there are still one or two unexploded bombs under my feet? There are signs advising of DANGER UNEXPLODED BOMBS, STRICTLY NO ADMITTANCE, WARNING SUDDEN DROP but I assumed these were not where I was walking! However, one or two public footpath direction pointers were missing off a sign in the bottom of the crater I was in!

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The RAF Fauld Explosion was a military accident which occurred at 11.11am on Monday, 27 November 1944 at the RAF Fauld underground munitions storage depot. It was one of the largest non-nuclear exposions in history and the largest on UK soil. One fifth of the force of Hiroshima. 

3500 to 4500 tonnes of ordnance exploded including 500 million rounds of rifle ammunition. The crater formed is 100 feet deep and 250 yards wide.

A nearby reservoir containing 450,000 cubic metres ( 6 million gallons) of water was destroyed along with buildings and a farm.

It is believed that about 70 people died and 18 bodies were never recovered. 200 cattle were killed by the explosion.

It is believed that use of a brass rather than a wooden chisel to remove a detonator from a live bomb may have caused the explosion.

More details and recent pictures of the underground storage facilities can be seen at:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3699468/Forbidden-remains-Britain-s-biggest-explosion.html

I was relieved to get back to the nearby Hanbury road.

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Without an explosion blowing me to smithereens! This explosive picture WAS taken today!

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Miles Walked 2

Steps 4,400, non of which were on an unexploded bomb

Calories Burnt 239

Average Pace 20 minutes per mile (I said it was tricky!)

Elevation Gain 116.9 feet

Min Elevation 314.4 feet

Max elevation 486.3 feet (unless you step on an unexploded bomb in which case it will be much higher).

 CUMULATIVE Mileage After Two Weeks 51.25

 

 

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