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Urban Explorers Tour Wayne Manor From Batman Begins, Now Abandoned

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Mentmore Towers, the sprawling English mansion that stood in for Wayne Manor in 2005’s Batman Begins, is in a state of disrepair and neglect, as documented by a short video by “Deserted Places,” an Instagram account dedicated to finding abandoned, neglected spaces and documenting them. Commenters suggest that the building is not actually abandoned in the strictest sense — you can visit it legally as a “museum,” which discourages theft or vandalism — but it appears from a quick search of the internet that they are confusing Mentmore for Wollaton Hall in Nottingham, which was Wayne Manor in The Dark Knight Rises. Mentmore Towers, built decades after Wollaton, borrowed significantly from the design of the building, making them virtually identical from the outside. Wollaton remains in much better condition, and is home to Nottingham Natural History Museum. 

That said, Mentmore is not fully abandoned, either. It has an operating golf course, and weddings offered at the accompanying country club offer opportunities for outdoor photo shoots that capture the distant beauty of the towers. Up close, though, Mentmore is classified as at-risk, with damage to the roof and chimneys that would require millions of pounds to fix.

Deserted Places is using video from a 2021 Tiktok from another urban explorer, Places_Forgotten, in their video. According to numerous online sources, the mansion was worth £31 million when it was last on the market.

You can see the short video below.

Real estate developer Simon Halabi bought Mentmore in 1999, with a plan to transform it into a luxury hotel. He faced legal challenges from locals who argued that Halabi had managed to inappropriately get regulatory permission to move forward on the project. The courts granted locals an injunction in 2004, preventing the project from moving forward. In 2005, British courts determined that Halabi’s planning permission was legally sound, but the project still never got off the ground.

By 2009, the housing market collapse had significantly impacted Halabi’s business. A more conservative plan was hatched to renovate and restore Mentmore without all the additional development that a luxury hotel would have required, but even that plan stalled, and the building has been collecting dust since.

Historic England has rated the condition of Mentmore as poor, and says that interior is at high risk, jeopardizing its architectural and cultural value due to “immediate risk of further rapid deterioration or loss of fabric.”

Here’s how they described it in November 2022: 

Country house built 1852-4 by Sir Joseph Paxton and GH Stokes for Baron Mayer Amschel de Rothschild. An application for Listed Building Consent and Planning Permission for external and internal alterations including repairs was granted in 2014. The programme of repairs identified within the consents has not been undertaken and there is a longstanding lack of regular maintenance. The service wing roof is in very poor condition and the deterioration of the main house is accelerating with areas of water ingress into the main hall and adjacent reception rooms.

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