Tales of the Urban Explorer: Solk Holdings Ltd

in #hive-10438710 days ago

We had barely arrived at the premises of ‘Solk Holdings Ltd' when a cop car came screaming up to us, with blue lights flashing, before tearing past and disappearing into a cloud of dust.

“I know we are trespassers mate, but surely they didn’t know we were coming?”, I mentioned to @anidiotexplores who was still watching the disappearing blue blur vanish from the car mirrors.


It's something I listen for while on-premises, and one day they will be coming for us, regardless of the non-crime situation.

As well as the passing cops, a shifty-looking bloke was loitering around the main gate with intent.

“Was that another explorer weighing us up?”


He seemed to be watching us from the corner of his eye while pretending to mess around with his phone but otherwise unassuming.

The main section of ‘Solk Holdings Ltd’ looked tight, with a large gate, barbed wire and adorned with a large warning sign that noticeably lacked the word ‘prosecute’.


so someone does actually know UK law and is aware that raising a civil case against explorers is quite futile

Beyond the gates, it looked vast with the ‘Maurice Dixon Canal Mills’ dominating the rear.


Ignoring the gate and noticing a hole in the nearest other building, we made for that and jumped through.


With a slightly flimsy small table as a landing pad, we were in a small part of ‘Solk Holdings Ltd’ and ready to see what was on offer.



Inside was a bore fest laced with a little terrible graffiti.




Everything cleared out besides the tent. If there was someone in it, they were probably quacking in their boots, I know I would have been. Not a sound was heard, and we didn’t have the heart to kick it over. It’s home for someone.


‘Shanghai Bristles’ – I couldn’t find any reference to that on the internet. Paintbrush bristles from China?


Why ‘Caution’, would our fingers get amputated if we investigated the hole? In any case, it appeared to be sealed up.


An even larger hole revealed the roof and outside. An alternative way to get around that menacing-looking gate? It was worth a look.


It could have worked, but I didn’t fancy scampering across this flimsy-looking roof with the prize of a 20-foot drop on the far side.


Such is the crime in Leeds that bars need to be placed as well as glass, with the latter not faring very well.


Disappointed, we hauled our arses out of the compromised window and looked for another way into the heart of ‘Solk Holdings Ltd’.


In the far corner was the breach area, though navigating this fence required limbs made of jelly and rubber. @anidiotexplores was through quickly but I struggled finding my body didn’t want to shape itself into a banana readily, my spine fiercely complaining, my voice screaming fits of profanity.

and I would need to do this again when leaving…, fuck sake


From here, things got more interesting, and I wondered about which entrance I should take. As neither of us registered as 'nonbinary' there was little choice; we would temporarily be ‘bi-gender’.


What is that you may wonder?


It’s the freakiest wallpaper I ever encountered, slightly burnt, and didn't appear to repeat itself.


‘bi-gender’ toilets you might think? The notice on each states… 'one person at a time'. Do we need it to be spelt out?


Exiting the ‘toilet room’, we found ourselves inside the formidable gate, and the inner gate as ajar. We wasted no time and shuffled through to what used to be ‘Maurice Dixon Canal Mills’.


‘Solk Holdings Ltd’ doesn’t have a lot happening but is over £1800 in credit and look at that interest rate of 5.64%. Mostly unheard of in the fiat world today.


The graffiti on the left wall looks vintage. I can imagine this old mill would have had stages of being empty in the past and it may have been drawn decades ago. Could it be that ‘Solk Ltd’ rented this space and left it all intact for their employees to feast on?


Old office space, vandalised, paint sprayed but otherwise quite empty.


... other than the odd homeless occupant.


...and the mandatory burnt section.


What is in there I wonder?


Why an even more derp-ridden section, complete with a compromised roof and wild plants.


A 'Dexter' clone has been murdering people in this section, that’s a fact.

Despite him being a serial killer, I was confident he would not see me as a 'bad person', sneak up from behind and hit me with a needle-filled with animal tranquiliser juice.



‘Solk Holdings Ltd’ had many flavours, the latest one being this type of sight. It was ‘Canal Mills’ after all, so it should have been expected.


Yet, walk a little further and it appeared to be more of a derelict office complete with graffiti of varying quality.


‘Solk Holdings Ltd'; they had fingers in several pies.


So many doors, you don’t know which one to cross. The area was a warren of buildings and corridors of all types.




A warehouse section contained some decent artwork, and of more recent times.


… and then the visuals changed again to some murky-looking door with a disturbing sign.


‘The Asbestos Room’, somewhere nobody should go but I had to take a peek.

Inside was a blackened sooty grisly mess, with chairs tied up in paper, some dubious black bags in one corner and a sickening rotting stench of death.


this is where they ditch the bodies that ‘pretend Dexter’ takes care of in the other part of the factory’…

“Let’s get the fuck out of here man”, I said to @anidiotexplores. “Dexter could lock us in the ‘The Asbestos Room’ letting us die a slow horrible death of asbestos poisoning”.


Shuddering we left the cursed room and passed a large map stuck on the wall of England with little room for Scotland.



Did they keep all the furniture in these big open spaces?


There’s a ‘FIRE’ over there, to the right.


We walked past the ajar gate and stared at the impassive gate hoping it might open by itself.

“It’s open”, yelled @anidiotexplores.

What the fuck, the massive gate was always open, and I would not be bent out of shape again?


I said a silent prayer to the god etched on a nearby wall and exited taking note of the shifty bloke who was in the same place and staring at us.

'do we have to spell it out dogbreath, you can just walk in'

Bloody cretin.

Foot Note:
‘Solk Holdings Ltd' officially went bust in 2017, but it took them almost two years to completely wind up the company and strike it off the registrar.



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Have you ever came across and starteled a homeless person during one of your exploits?

Yes, just once.., but he was quite friendly and showed us around his 'home' for the payment of a ciggy. That's like currency to them.

That's cool. I imagine most of them are glad to have someone to talk to.

He had a double-bed with bedclothes upstairs, but sadly no glass in the windows. 3 weeks later, the place was burnt down. He's probably now back on the streets.

Man that is a shit deal. I’m surprised the powers that be don’t keep them run out of the buildings. Hell they’ve basically made being homeless a crime over here.

What a bizarre section of wallpaper!

I laughed at the Caution - hole. I mean wtf?

Yeah, non recurring pattern wallpaper is new to me, wonder where they got it from.., and who wrote the 'caution' note.. hehe...

Maybe it was tent interloper that had a sense of humour!

Saved with a final snap of some excellent artwork!

You mean 'The Asbestos Room'? 😀

sometimes I wonder if they put signs like that up to deter people from entering!

Hi buddy. How are you.

Even though people are no more living in that place, it looks so organized
I love those wallpapers or artworks
Looks good!


$PIZZA slices delivered:
@jlinaresp(9/15) tipped @slobberchops

That black-and-white 'bizarre' wallpaper is interesting. I have one summer shirt with a similar pattern, but now I will think carefully before I wear it. 🤪

That would probably turn heads, is it 'monochrome' like this paper?

Actually, it's not even that similar. I went to check.😂
Maybe I'll wear it once 😎

Dazzling.., and only for selected places methinks.

Yes, for a hidden sunset stroll like now 😎

That wallpaper was really crazy. I initially thought it was a mashup of graffiti. And speaking of graffiti, the early ones were simple, but at the later ones were nice, especially the black and gray one. I think this was really good, although the cop car at the beginning was scary.

especially the black and gray one.

It's great that one, kind of steampunk. Is it writing, or some sharp-edged locomotive?

I can't tell myself. I see pipes and metal like things, but I can make out any words or specific form. Or maybe I'm just not too artistic to figure it out haha

Exploring the abandoned ‘Solk Holdings Ltd’ seems like a thrilling adventure, complete with shifty characters, mysterious graffiti, and precarious rooftop escapades. The “bi-gender” reference adds a touch of humor to an otherwise intense exploration. Keep sharing your urban adventures! 🏢🌟

I can't even imagine how fun this is! We watch the YouTube channel Rate My Takeaway religiously and it seems like there are more and more abandoned, dilapidated buildings across the UK.

We watch the YouTube channel Rate My Takeaway religiously

LOL, that dude is gonna kill himself with all that junk food..., can you understand his very northern accent? I notice 'Have I found the BEST Fish & Chip Shop in the UK!?', is in East Yorkshire, well that's not a surprise!

I worry about his health, his weight bounced around quite a bit since we started watching him in 2020 but lately he looks bloated all the time. Funny you mention his accent. I had one hell of a time understanding him at first (I could only make out about 1/3rd of what he said) but that's not a problem after four years. What a success story. He was let go from a butcher's shop in Yorkshire during the pandemic and started the channel out of desperation. He's worth something like $15M now just four years later.

Funny you mention his accent. I had one hell of a time understanding him at first

When I lived in America, I had to change to way I spoke and ended up with a pseudo American accent after a short period of time. It was that or get lots of 'Huh?' comments.

He's worth something like $15M now just four years later.

That's great, I love stories like this.

Where in America did you live? Was it much of a culture shock for you? I think I'd much rather live in the UK but I'm not sure if it's a case of "the grass seems greener" over there or not.

It's been great watching Danny grow his channel. He's had so much tragedy too, his first wife passed shortly after he started his channel but he just kept at it and it paid off. He's stayed humble too.

Great pictures as always

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Hello friend @slobberchops, I have had a concern for a long time when I see the buildings in ruins and/or in a state of abandonment, and I don't understand how these properties can be allowed to be lost. In these cities, isn't there a housing shortage?

I start to detail those murals, all those colours, the structure; so many details, that I don't understand how they can let them lose what I consider to be national heritage.

In time it may be leased out to local businesses, and someone will own it but until then it will remain as seen. They never stay this way indefinitely.

Wow that place just keeps going!

Compared to some of your other adventure destinations, this one seems to be in better overall shape. Looks like a higher level of hobo with the nice bedroom suite and the relatively solid looking tent.

It definitely did take a murdery turn the deeper you ventured and I am positively googly eyed that you made it out alive to report the harrowing tale back to your legion of followers!


Compared to some of your other adventure destinations, this one seems to be in better overall shape.

Don't get to used to it, it's back to the shitholes for the next exciting tale!

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Haaaaahaaaaahaaaa :))... What a way to start this article with that scene of the police car!.... I'm pissing myself laughing just imagining this!!!! :))... And the other "possible explorer evaluating" hahaa :))...

As always, a surreal place and I love the photos of those "obligatory burned areas"... And all that crazy urban art on the walls!... What a place!... As always, a 100% hilarious article with high quality photos!... Thanks for sharing @slobberchops friend!...

I said a silent prayer to the god etched on a nearby wall and exited taking note of the shifty bloke who was in the same place and staring at us.

haaaaaahaaaaaaaaaahaaaaaaaa :))

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It was over a year ago, but I distinctly remember the cops sailing by, not for us though!

The place was a maze of different styles, and must have been interesting to work at when open. The only thing I remember Armley (Leeds) being famous for is the 'Fish and Chips' when I was much younger. As it's Yorkshire, they are invariably great!