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Pyestock Diaries

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Centrally located in a wall to the west, were large Perspex panels overlooking the whole turbine room of the Air House. When we entered, the sudden clustraphobic feeling of this small dark room after the large airy turbine hall was startling; it felt cold, unloved and damp. But this was more than made up by the rows and rows of green instrument panels, dials, switches and lights. A second semi-circular control panel added to the feel, still impressive even though most of its instrumentation had been removed. Other displays featured a schematic diagram of the site, peppered with further monitoring dials and warning lights. Pyestock felt like something from a Gerry Anderson programme; although this was real and not some supermarionation playground.

I spent a fruitless fifteen minutes trying to photograph a huge site schematic on the wall. It gave the layout of the pipes and the names and locations of the various test cells scattered around Pyestock; it could be useful to pinpoint the uses, and reverse engineer the siteís various functions, but for actual locations it wasnít much use. I took a look through various drawers and cabinets which were stuffed full of schematics and instructions for the Air House but nothing petaining to the site itself. A phone list yielded more clues as to buildings and names, but I still didnít have a site map to start tying the whole site together.

Air House control room looking north.
03|03|07 © Simon Cornwell 2007