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Thread: R S Clare smugglers tunnels rumours

  1. #1
    Senior Member marky's Avatar
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    Default R S Clare smugglers tunnels rumours

    This rumour is based around a pirate/privateer/captain Crow who was supposed to have had smugglers tunnels leading to the river.
    R S Clare is one of the oldest companies (over 250 yrs) in the area and is based at Stanhope street but there is a Crow street which crosses the site (it's been closed off by the company for many years)
    The site is supposed to have been used previously by Crow.
    I first heard this in the 1970's, but not a thing since. Nice rumour though.


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    Still alive snappel's Avatar
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    Is than down by Cain's brewery?

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    Senior Member marky's Avatar
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    Bottom of Stanhope street. The original Crow Street sign still exists.
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  4. #4
    MissInformed
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    OOHH just been past there...about 5 mins from my house.
    Would be great if there were tunnels!!

  5. #5
    MissInformed
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    I have just emailed RS Clare, and sent them a link to this!
    Hopefully will hear something back

  6. #6
    theninesisters
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    Is than down by Cain's brewery?
    You mean you've never taken the boat in the underground river under Cains?

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    Senior Member marky's Avatar
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    Re: Cains...I read the brewery recently began to use an underground water source in their beer. (Liverpool Echo mentioned it)

    Did anyone photograph the buildings near there, to the left of the Coburg pub, as I've heard they're nearly demolished. I went past a couple of weeks ago and thought they were getting their roofs repaired...shows what I know. Seems all the buildings from Parliament St. to the Coburg pub are going?

  8. #8
    MissInformed
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    there is not much left of them now!
    I go past there twice a day.
    will try to take a pic later...

  9. #9
    scouserdave
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    Worra fascinating thread. Thanks

  10. #10
    scouserdave
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    Never heard of Captain Crow until I read Marky's thread. Just done a google

    Liverpool's Heart of Darkness

    News: It was strictly business: The city's era of prosperity rested on the profits of the transatlantic slave trade. Today its idle docks are home to the memories of an ancestral crime.

    By Verlyn Klinkenborg

    July/August 2002 Issue

    On the 27th of July, 1807, a ship named the Kitty's Amelia sailed from Liverpool, England, under the command of Captain Hugh Crow, a one-eyed Manxman turning 42. Earlier that year, Parliament had abolished the British slave trade, but the Kitty's Amelia had received legal clearance before the first of May, when abolition took effect. Though she left port almost three months after the slave trade officially ended in Great Britain, the Kitty's Amelia sailed legally, as legally, that is, as a slave trader -- the last of the English slave traders -- could sail. The ship carried 300 tons burden and 18 guns, a concession not only to England's war with France but also to conditions on the Guinea coast of Africa, where Captain Crow -- called "Mind-Your-Eye Crow" -- was bound.

    I have no idea whether the Kitty's Amelia was finally dismasted, her timbers knocked apart, her ship's furniture salvaged or burned. The ship may have ended its days benignly. It might have become a prison hulk, like the ones in Great Expectations, or been wrecked at sea. There's no knowing precisely where Captain Crow's human cargo finally ended up after being sold in the West Indies or where and in what circumstances they lived and died, apart from those captives, that is, who died of disease aboard ship during the Middle Passage from Africa to the New World.

    As for Captain Crow, his days ended in 1829, and he was buried on the Isle of Man. In his autobiography, Memoirs of the Late Captain Hugh Crow of Liverpool, he does his best to make a slave's voyage aboard the Kitty's Amelia sound almost pleasant. "I always took great pains to promote the health and comfort of all on board, by proper diet, regularity, exercise, and cleanliness, for I considered that on keeping the ship clean and orderly, which was always my hobby, the success of our voyage mainly depended." How you interpret this passage depends entirely on the meaning you give the word "success."

    I recently stood at the edge of the Mersey River, trying to imagine the July day 195 years ago when the Kitty's Amelia worked her way into the tide. The thought of that day brought with it a sense of the irrevocable, of lives lost, fortunes gathered and dispersed, the peculiar distortions of human and economic justice we like to call history. Perhaps someone in Liverpool, watching the Kitty's Amelia work her way downstream in 1807, had the sense of an era ending. But human flesh was just one among many cargoes, and a risky one because slaves found it so easy to die aboard ship. The end of the slave trade in Great Britain ratified the outrage of the abolitionists -- people who, as Captain Crow saw it, knew little or nothing about the subject of slavery -- but it also confirmed the shifting of markets and the growing importance of the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain. When Captain Crow arrived in Kingston, Jamaica, he found the harbor crowded with slave ships, their human wares going unsold.

    Today, Liverpool stands where it always has, rising above the Mersey and above a chain of now disused docks. From the river's edge, you can look across the water and see the Wirral, a spur of land that divides the Dee River from the Mersey and, in a sense, England from Wales. Standing on the embankment, watching the tidal chop on the Mersey's brown water, which empties into a sea framed by Scotland, Ireland, Wales, and northern England, you get none of the land's-end feeling you get at the westernmost tip of Cornwall, where the waves breaking against the headlands seem to have come direct from America. The Mersey these days could be almost any large river flowing past the engineered edge of almost any city. Except that between 1760 and 1807 Liverpool built and the Mersey floated the largest fleet of slave ships in the history of the trade. Between 1795 and 1804 alone, Liverpool authorities cleared nearly 1,100 ships for the triangular traffic that carried manufactured goods to the west coast of Africa, slaves to the West Indies, and sugar, tobacco, and rum to England.

    To most of late 18th-century Liverpool, to almost everyone except the ships' captains and their crews, slavery was an economic abstraction, a matter of so much return on so much investment. It was an exercise in the convertibility of capital. A successful voyage -- one in which the majority of slaves survived and reached the sales block in good health -- performed the miracle of turning Manchester cloth or Sheffield steel into human beings. The human beings were then turned into several kinds of sugar, coffee, cotton, and bills of exchange, which, in Liverpool, were converted once again into the opulence of an increasingly opulent city. The trade fed the increasing girth of its merchants; it supported their luxuries and charities alike. The enormous prosperity of this three-sided trade did more to justify the practice of slavery than any of the philosophical arguments that a man like Captain Crow might make, who argued that "the traffic in negroes was permitted by that Providence that rules over all, as a necessary evil," and that English slavers had a regard for human life that other nations, which continued slave trading after 1807, did not share. That the solid flesh of slaves might melt away mattered vastly less than the very solid returns that materialized when a ship like the Kitty's Amelia completed her round- trip. No apology like a dividend.

    In a sense, the convertibility of capital converted Liverpool. The city that had once competed with Bristol and London for the slave trade dominated it completely by the time it was abolished. However you measure the relative profits of slave trading in Liverpool, the West Indian traffic that breasted the Mersey River year after year laid the foundation for a nautical and mercantile prosperity in Liverpool that reached right through the 19th century. Prosperity may selectively preserve some elements of the past -- its finery, especially -- but it quite thoroughly wipes the past away too. A visitor to Liverpool now sees a fundamentally Victorian city, a fraying monument to a latter-day prosperity. That Victorian city, one of the greatest ports of Europe, was founded in part on the profits of the slave trade. As the city has dwindled, the fabric of Victorian Liverpool, much of it now labeled with signs saying "To Let," seems to have grown larger and larger, the ghostly reminder of richer times.

    Were Captain Crow to make one last passage up the Mersey and into harbor at Liverpool, it's hard to say what would surprise him most. Some of the street names and their layouts would remain as he knew them. He would find unexpected structures like the Custom House, the Cunard Building, and the Royal Liver Building looming over the river, constructions of a magnificence, a commercial pomposity he could scarcely have imagined. But what would surely have surprised him most, like anyone who knew the Liverpool waterfront before World War II, are the docks themselves. The forest of ships' masts and spars is long gone, the crowds of men loading and unloading, the merchants and ships' owners striding among them. All the waterfront cacophony is gone, replaced by quiet rectangular pools of water whose river gates, where ships entered, were opened for good more than 20 years ago. The shipping has gone, and the warehouses have been turned into office space, into restaurants and wine bars and museums, including the Merseyside Maritime Museum, with a gallery devoted to transatlantic slavery, which opened in 1994. The opening of that gallery began a process that culminated last year in an official apology by the City Council for Liverpool's role in the transatlantic slave trade.

    Like all such apologies, this one was made from descendant to descendant, from the distant political heirs of the slavers to the distant blood heirs of the slaves. And though the gesture -- including a purification ceremony by African chiefs flown in for the occasion -- is emotionally and symbolically significant, it has, in Liverpool's case at least, the strange effect of ratifying the grander apology that time itself has made. The same dispassionate economic logic that made slaves part of the currency of Liverpool's transatlantic trade also brought Liverpool's shipping -- the economic and emotional heartbeat of the city -- to an end in the second half of the 20th century. The thing that would have seemed inconceivable in the late 1700s, the extinction of Liverpool as a nautical force, has come to be. The very first person I met on my recent trip to England was a cab driver whose father had been a Liverpool dockworker back in the days, only a generation ago, when there were still ships for Liverpool dockworkers to work.

    Where the shipping went is another story, a tale of containerization, labor struggles, Margaret Thatcher, and, ultimately, the loss of empire. The deep-water pools that are Liverpool's docks have quietly silted in since then. Some days, down at the Albert Dock, the most nautical sights are a propeller from the Lusitania and a Yellow Submarine, commemorating the Beatles, that seems to have surfaced in the lawn just across from the entrance to the Albert Dock. A small sailboat rests at berth in the pool where merchantmen once docked, its owner pressure-scrubbing its deck while gulls scream overhead, their cries echoing off the warehouse walls. The more portentous sign of the shift in Liverpool's fate, more portentous by far than Victorian grandiosities with unoccupied floors, is the modern building that once housed the Transport and General Workers Union -- the dockworkers union -- which is also empty and posted "To Let."

    The loss of a city's way of life is no atonement for an ancestral crime. It does nothing to redeem the loss of all those African lives, the slow execution of whole peoples. The shift of seagoing traffic away from Liverpool does nothing to expropriate the wealth of those whose fortunes were built, in part, on the slave trade.

    In the end, the City Council's apology for Liverpool's history of slave trading, like all such apologies, requires an act of instructed imagination, an effort to understand the dimensions of the crime, without which contrition and gesture are meaningless. In that sense, few museum exhibitions are more aptly sited than the Transatlantic Slavery Gallery at the Merseyside Maritime Museum. At the center of the gallery is a reconstruction of the hold of a slave ship, the sullen chamber in which Africans would have found themselves chained during the long transit from the Guinea coast to the West Indies. What a visitor can discern from such a reconstruction is only a sense of rough proportion, at best. Building codes prevented the gallery designers from making the ceiling as low as it would have been in a real slave ship. In other words, a legally mandated concern for the proper headroom of modern visitors prevented the museum from showing how little headroom the Africans who had been snatched illegally from their lives would really have had.

    The very structures of the present forbid us from seeing the past with any ease. Only a few of the visitors to the museum can ever have experienced the rolling of a ship under sail in the mid-Atlantic. Fewer still can ever have been kidnapped or shackled or whipped or forcibly separated from their families, much less have known that they were being sold into a life of worse-than-penal servitude. It's no criticism of the Transatlantic Slavery Gallery, which is a moving experience in and of itself, to say that it cannot impart to its visitors the intensity of grief and suffering that would have prevailed in the hold of the Kitty's Amelia. To do so would of course be intolerable and prohibited.

    By most modern standards of museum craft, the Transatlantic Slavery Gallery is an educational success. But, like most museums, including museums of conscience, it's also a reminder that our efforts to understand the past, experientially, are always aesthetic. A visit to the slave ship's hold is just one of the attractions of the Albert Dock, after all. It coexists with a branch of the Tate Museum, the Museum of Liverpool Life, and an underground exhibition devoted to the Beatles' story. You can go straight from viewing the iron shackles any slaver would have carried to a cozy English tea with a view of Liverpool Cathedral in the distance. It takes just a short walk along the Mersey.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scouserdave View Post
    Never heard of Captain Crow until I read Marky's thread. Just done a google
    Also read about Cpn Crow beating off French privateers.
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  12. #12
    MissInformed
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    Any more info on this guys?
    I emailed the company but they didnt get back to me.

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    there is a tunnel running through the mersey to the wirral. it led to a now gone abbey that was built during the reformamation, The tunnel was built to escape persecution and to hide in. Several attempts have been made to find it but they have been unable to use geo-physics surveys as of the sandstone that liverpool is built on.
    Last edited by chezza; 12-15-2006 at 02:10 PM. Reason: ingkish none good lol

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    PhilipG
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    Quote Originally Posted by chezza View Post
    there is a tunnel running through the mersey to the wirral. it led to a now gone abbey that was built during the reformamation, The tunnel was built to escape persecution and to hide in. Several attempts have been made to find it but they have been unable to use geo-physics surveys as of the sandstone that liverpool is built on.
    I've heard there are 3 tunnels under the Mersey.

    Sorry, but I couldn't resist that.
    Seriously, it's a long distance for anyone to dig.

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    Senior Member ChrisGeorge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chezza View Post
    there is a tunnel running through the mersey to the wirral. it led to a now gone abbey that was built during the reformamation, The tunnel was built to escape persecution and to hide in. Several attempts have been made to find it but they have been unable to use geo-physics surveys as of the sandstone that liverpool is built on.
    Birkenhead Priory? Stanlaw Abbey near present-day Ellesmere Port?

    If the latter, it's extremely unlikely since that abbey was built where the Mersey is its widest. A fine tale but total legend surely.

    Chris
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    Newbie chezza's Avatar
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    the council of british archaeology have made several attempts to find it

  17. #17
    MissInformed
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
    Birkenhead Priory? Stanlaw Abbey near present-day Ellesmere Port?

    If the latter, it's extremely unlikely since that abbey was built where the Mersey is its widest. A fine tale but total legend surely.

    Chris
    Hi chris
    I have never heard of this before, but how can you say 'total legend, surely' if there is not much evidence either way?

    We need to keep an open mind about these things...

  18. #18
    PhilipG
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    Default Let's get real.

    Quote Originally Posted by MissInformed View Post
    Hi chris
    I have never heard of this before, but how can you say 'total legend, surely' if there is not much evidence either way?

    We need to keep an open mind about these things...
    The fact that these things come as such a surprise with "not much evidence" (ie no evidence) must surely tell us quite a lot.
    Liverpool, unlike most of the other towns/cities in the UK, isn't very old, and its history has been documented rather well.

    The Mersey Tunnel, for instance, took 9 years to dig (with all the available 20th century equipment), so it's not going to be likely that some amateurs managed to dig one hundreds (?) of years before.
    Last edited by PhilipG; 12-16-2006 at 12:31 AM. Reason: To add something.

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    Senior Member ChrisGeorge's Avatar
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    Hi Philip, chezza, and MissInformed

    Yes I am skeptical about it given that at the time, in the Middle Ages, there would not have been the technology to dig that distance.

    It sounds to me as if the story might be in the same league as Keith Andrews's claim that the mass grave in Old Swan is evidence of a plot by the British to exterminate the Irish, to kill 3,561 of them. But just think about it, such a scheme would have necessitated transporting 3,000+ people out to Old Swan to an internment camp and shooting them, none of which was witnessed -- the transportation, the internment camp, nor the shooting. And that claim is made against other evidence that the Liverpool health official at the time of the disinternment, Mr. Ken Williams, says shows the people were not shot and that some of the coffins had plaques showing a date of 1859 not 1848 as Andrews maintains, and that there were child burials in the grave which Andrews says there were not.

    Well, chezza and MissInformed, it comes down to what should we believe:

    Facts or make believe?

    Best regards

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    MissInformed
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
    Hi Philip, chezza, and MissInformed

    Yes I am skeptical about it given that at the time, in the Middle Ages, there would not have been the technology to dig that distance.

    It sounds to me as if the story might be in the same league as Keith Andrews's claim that the mass grave in Old Swan is evidence of a plot by the British to exterminate the Irish, to kill 3,561 of them. But just think about it, such a scheme would have necessitated transporting 3,000+ people out to Old Swan to an internment camp and shooting them, none of which was witnessed -- the transportation, the internment camp, nor the shooting. And that claim is made against other evidence that the Liverpool health official at the time of the disinternment, Mr. Ken Williams, says shows the people were not shot and that some of the coffins had plaques showing a date of 1859 not 1848 as Andrews maintains, and that there were child burials in the grave which Andrews says there were not.

    Well, chezza and MissInformed, it comes down to what should we believe:

    Facts or make believe?

    Best regards

    Chris

    Hi Chris, Philip

    I understand completely what you are both saying, but I personally keep an open mind about anything like this until solid evidence is found.
    I don't know either way, of course I don't... I guess I am just an optimist!

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    Newbie chezza's Avatar
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    i will have a look for the information from the CBA and hopefully prove it one way or another

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    I work at RS Clare at the moment and I haven't seen or heard of any tunnels while I have been here. I even asked the boss when I first read this post. No one here knows of any tunnels...but maybe they do and there are and it is a big secret which I am not privy to yet seeing as I am new and only the temp.

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    DaisyChains
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    great to know we now have an inside spy!!

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    Queen Of Llamas MissDemenour's Avatar
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    LOL! Yes! I will snoop around on my lunch breaks and see if I can see anything suspicious? O.o'' Hope I dont get fired !
    I wonder if he'll make me crawl. I wonder how far I might fall. I'm stuck beneath my skin I don't know who to blame for this mess I'm in. Involuntarily falling to my knees another victim of heart disease. Another Night without a dark tunnel, stay in bed so I can't be stolen. And everything revolves around the fear of my fate. Everyday a little closer to death.

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    Senior Member marky's Avatar
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    I was told this rumour in the mid-1970s, but I haven't heard anything else on the rumour-grapevine since. My own opinion is that it has a small chance of being true. 200 years ago the shore-line would have been different. There are more famous rumours of a tunnel around the Baltic Fleet pub, so who knows for certain.
    This area of Toxteth is old, but one day it will no doubt be re-developed for apartments, so we may find out in 10 or 20 years time.
    Here's a link to Clares website giving some history...mentions it would have fronted the shore and still has brick vaults...interesting.
    http://www.rsclare.co.uk/news/news-d...r=2007&month=2
    Anyway, here's one of Liverpools' most important street-signs...which for some reason didn't feature in the recent campaign to remove the slave streets...Captain Hugh Crow


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    S'not to be sniffed at that Marky and I like the 'Watch out there's a thief about' sticker on the burglar alarm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by marky View Post
    Re: Cains...I read the brewery recently began to use an underground water source in their beer. (Liverpool Echo mentioned it)

    Did anyone photograph the buildings near there, to the left of the Coburg pub, as I've heard they're nearly demolished. I went past a couple of weeks ago and thought they were getting their roofs repaired...shows what I know. Seems all the buildings from Parliament St. to the Coburg pub are going?
    Yes,somebody did. [not me]

    http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=411816

    I went past the site recently-currently they've dug down about three storeys below Caryl St-and so far the whole lot hasn't collapsed into Cain's lake. Yet!

    Dave.

  28. #28
    theninesisters
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    For 's sake! isn't the council going to leave us with any of our Heritage? I used to go past these buildings on the way to work in Sefton Street and you used to see massive barges being constructed and always the flash of a blue torch. Now they're gone for some MORE high rise flats.

    It's horrible to say this, but I can't wait for 2008 to come and go so we show our city off and then everyone naffs off and leaves the city like a ghost town.

    Then I will be the 1st person to knock on the Council Offices and kindly show them what we've lost, how many flats are now empty and tell them 'I told you so'.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Jona76 View Post

    It's horrible to say this, but I can't wait for 2008 to come and go so we show our city off and then everyone naffs off and leaves the city like a ghost town.


    :
    That's a stupid, stupid thing to say.
    All because you're not happy with some of the council's choices

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    I don't want them to leave the city like a ghost town. That would just be sad. I am angry as well about them knocking down alot of the older buildings. some of them where really beautiful pieces of architectural heritage, grade two listed buildings, and they knocked them down. They have also took away alot of the parkland in the city centre, so where will people go now to sit and relax on a hot day? It really annoys me. I used to go for quiet sits on chavasse park, when they took that away I went to man island but now there is the park behind the georges hall an thats it.

    Back onto Clares, there are vaults underneath, I am not allowed to see them though cus of health and safety. Dunno if there are tunnels though.

    And funny someone should post a sign of crow street, I was going to do that very thing this morning but I saw someone had beat me to it XD.
    I wonder if he'll make me crawl. I wonder how far I might fall. I'm stuck beneath my skin I don't know who to blame for this mess I'm in. Involuntarily falling to my knees another victim of heart disease. Another Night without a dark tunnel, stay in bed so I can't be stolen. And everything revolves around the fear of my fate. Everyday a little closer to death.

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