Saturday, March 05, 2011

Ushaw in the news again

Readers may recall the photos of the state of the junior house at Ushaw that were posted here last July. They were featured on a site called 28 Day Later Urban Exploration Forum. Now it seems a similar group may have jumped the gun somewhat according to a report in the Sunderland Echo. H/t to Giorgio Roversi.

Priests’ college intruder warning

A WARNING has been issued to trespassers to stay away from a priests’ training college after a spate of incidents.

Police have said those who enter Ushaw College in Durham face arrest as well as being at risk of injury.

The premises have been subjected to various thefts and incidents of criminal damage over the past 12 months.

On Thursday, February 24, officers were called to a report of suspicious activity at the college, after a member of the public reported three men had climbed through a ground-floor window.

When police arrived they discovered six men and women of various ages inside one of the unsecure buildings on the site.

When questioned, the group explained they were involved in a photography project after reading the college was closing in the near future.

Sergeant Keith Wardle, of Durham Constabulary, said: “Anyone entering the college is guilty of trespass and could be arrested. They are also placing themselves at risk because of the poor condition of some of the buildings. We would urge people to stay away from the college.”

It was announced in October that Ushaw College was to close after a large drop in priest numbers. The 200-year-old building is home to St Cuthbert’s Seminary, which has been training priests since its foundation in France more than 400 years ago.


robertatforsythe said...

Thanks for all your work in keeping us up to date. Funny wry smile stuff. Yes, trespassers are not very good news but nor does it seem very Christ like to welcome folk in such a way. All rather reminiscent of what one had to do to get into steam sheds in the dying days of British Railways and National Coal Board steam. I was not in the right place in the right time to do it often but I did it sometimes and in retrospect was very glad I see. Thinks of Widdrington Disposal Point and sweettalking security after the event and of Bickershaw colliery engine shed, warm engines, late at night, the drivers downing tea in the "cabin" not noticing the mice scurrying all around!

1569 Rising said...

I wish I could say I was surprised at this news. Many of we mere footsoldiers in the Church have been expecting just such a development.

I am intrigued at several points in the Echo piece:

"Spate of incidents" - and these took place when the College was occupied. God knows what it will be like after July.

"Unsecure buildings" - sounds like an invitation to me.

"Trespassers face arrest" - but I gather the six persons found in the buildings were not arrested, but Sgt Wardle is concerned about the "Elfinsafety" of intruders.

No doubt the Governors of the College were aware of the implications of abandoning the College. I trust that plans are already in place for teams of security men to be constantly patrolling the estate on a 24/7 basis. I have also no doubt that the Governors will have factored the cost into their calculations.

Or am I being naive?

Mind How You Go said...

Someone has missed trick here. The intruders should have been rounded up and made to study there for a week (ladies excepted of course) - that would have ensured they didn't return. And they would have warned all their pals of similar mind.
The sergeant said: “Anyone entering the college is guilty of trespass and could be arrested." I presume he means entering the college 'illegally', otherwise all those poor souls who are left, and the priests who attended the LMS training course recently have had a lucky escape.

Anonymous said...

As I understand it there is no general offence of trespass on private property. You have to prove that damage has been committed. Different rules apply to things like railways.