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Inside the abandoned old Boys' Club left untouched for years; We had a look inside the now old eerie building.

Byline: Katie Bellis

Opening in 1922, Swansea Boys' Club was once one of the most successful clubs on the Swansea and West Wales football scene.

The club was actually started in the Strand Mission and, as many recall, it was a huge success.

At one time it could count around 500 members on its books.

Now all that is left is an abandoned eerie building overlooking the city.

In 2015, there were plans to turn theMayhillbuilding into a community centre hosting sports and social events.

However, the building which is owned bySwansea Council, is currentlyon the market for [pounds sterling]50,000.

We decided to take a look inside the large unused facility, which features several dark, old and creepy rooms thought to have been vacant for more than a decade.

Outside, you will find overgrown grass and graffiti covering the walls.

Walking around the building today, you could be mistaken for a scene from Most Haunted.

Step inside and you will be welcomed by a cold, musty, damp smell.

The freezing air blasts its way through the glassless window frames into the building.

Several rooms contain numerous rubble and scatters of glass on the floor.

Wallpaper is peeling off the walls and ceilings and the air is filled with dust. The old floor boards and holes in the ground feel like they could collapse at any given moment.

But as you carefully make your way up the staircase, you are met with the sound of pigeons cooing and a wonderful view of Swansea Bay.

In an article from 2003, Bob Popham, ofWest Cross,Swansea, spoke about his memories of a club that began its life after the chief constable of Swansea, FJ May, asked a comparative newcomer to the city if he would launch a boys' club for the youngsters who lived in and around the tenement buildings and railway arches of the Strand.

Bob said he was a member of the Swansea Boys Club from a very young age.

"It first started up in the Ragged School in the town," he says, "but then they built a new club on the hill.

"Pop Hopkins and his good wife spent most of their days there. They were like mother and father to the young lads that went there.

"He was there morning, noon and night and made men out of the hoodlums whose fathers were in the war and not always there when they were growing up.

"I remember if boys were fighting, Pop would give them a pair of boxing gloves so that they could sort it out in the ring.

"If boys were making a noise or behaving unruly in the showers, Mrs Hopkins would throw a bucket of cold water over the culprits and that would quieten them down.

"Yes, if ever anybody deserves an honour it's Pop Hopkins for the untold good work he did for the boys of the hill.

"His memory should be honoured by the city of Swansea.

"Pop was truly a man amongst men and his family should be very proud of him and what he achieved."

The colourful 1,000-year history of Swansea's Wind Street and how it became the city's beating heart

CAPTION(S):

Credit: Robert Melen

The old abandoned Swansea Boys' Club overlooks the city

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

Overgrown grass surrounds the building

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

The floors contain lots of rubble

Credit: Robert Melen

Swansea Boys' Club was once one of the most successful clubs on the Swansea and West Wales football scene

Credit: Robert Melen

Pictures on some of the walls

Credit: Robert Melen

Another picture

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

Inside there is a cold musty damp smell

Credit: Robert Melen

A light switch dangles from the ceiling

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

The building is now on the market for [pounds sterling]50,000

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

The building looks over the city

Credit: Robert Melen

The facility has been unused for more than a decade

Credit: Robert Melen

The creepy building is dark and old

Credit: South Wales Evening Post archive

Archive image of Swansea Boys' Club

Credit: Robert Melen

Credit: Robert Melen

The view from the building upstairs

Credit: Robert Melen

A room upstairs

Credit: Robert Melen

The old staircase

Credit: Robert Melen

One of the walls in the building

Credit: Robert Melen

The club first opened in 1922
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Lifestyle
Publication:Wales Online (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Nov 30, 2018
Words:741
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