This is the mouth of the giant. What lies ahead after this point is a mile long trek though the tunnel in search of its legendary cavern.
I’ll give you the back story huh. About 18 months ago my other half purchased an old mixte and I had to collect. After looking in to some of the local history online, I stumbled upon Totley tunnel. Tales on train fanatic forums told me about a cavern situated half way through the tunnel – some saying it was there, others saying it was just a myth. After chatting with Nick and Morse who came with me to collect the mixte, we stuck our torches against the window in the hope of spotting the cavern on the ride through. The train conductor wandered down the carriage, said he had never seen it but told us to watch the doors – we could map the location of each vent due to the air pressure slamming the doors! After that we discarded the cavern and put it to bed.
Fast forwarding a year or so, Totley tunnel came up again in conversation between all the SNC lads. After everyone meeting up a plan was knocked together to go and search for the cavern. On the first attempt we wandered down a small portion of the tunnel and then retreated, promising return.
This time we were armed with a better understanding of tunnel length between alcoves and where there was a workers room, setting off back into the darkness. We split into two groups of two and one of three, walking at an alcoves distance from one another. Every time one was reached a person from each group would shout out ‘Alcove!’. Eyes were trained on the signals – if that shit changed colour, we were hugging the wall in the cut outs.
After what what felt like hours the guys at the front shouted back to say they had found it. The cavern was better than expected but it made little sense that the whole thing was so elegantly bricked and would only ever get a few visitors.
Morse decided to take shower, a couple of soggy camera photographs were taken and we walked back on to the rails and disappeared.