Forbidden Fruit is an abandoned exchange hall or auction house in England. Built in the late 19th Century, this historical building was originally a depot for the sale of goods brought to the city by nearby railway station. In the early 20th Century this depot was converted into a produce exchange. Hundreds of people would pack into the exchange halls to bid on the latest exotic imports from the nearby port and docks. The goods were housed in large nearby warehouses prior to sale.
There are two exchange halls, both featuring large trap-doors where the goods would have been lifted into the hall for display during bidding. The largest hall is heptagonal in shape, with the large auctioneer podium standing below five rectangular Art Deco windows. This room has a large central dome-shaped skylight, with four smaller domes towards the corners of the room. Tiered wooden benches fill much of the room, angled towards the auctioneer podium. The smaller hall is much darker, being illuminated by another five Art Deco windows with three rectangular skylights above. The tiered benches in this hall are curved and much more cramped together, forming steeply rising rows of seating with little leg room. A curved upper balcony level provides additional seating, accessed by a rear stairway. In this hall the podium is tucked into one corner.
I visited Forbidden Fruit several times, taking advantage of varied lighting at different hours. There is a very special atmosphere to this untouched relic at sunrise. Standing in the blue pre-dawn light setting up my camera in silence, watching as the Golden Hour begins and the light slowly builds and creeps across the benches. One of my favourite exploring locations (so far).
Click images to view high-resolution versions.
Please return to the Location Gallery to view photos from other abandoned places, or browse related links suggested below.