Chimney felling videos combine the grace of archive footage with the adrenaline of Jenga

 Today we’re fascinated by these great clips of chimney felling. Vast, towering brick chimneys, often designed by celebrated architects, and built with the blood and tears of hundreds, indeed some men will have died in the dangerous sky-high construction and bricklaying of these giant structures. They were the emblem of a vast industrial past that spanned decades, and then in a matter of minutes stuffed with explosives, or in some cases straw soaked in paraffin, and destroyed forever, leaving nothing but an absence on the horizon.

It’s incredible that British Pathé has eight videos of chimney felling, the preparatory work, close-ups of the men’s faces as they pack the foundations with explosives, and then those final graceful seconds – a huge chimney slowly falling, then comes the crash, then nothing but thousands of bricks scattered across a field, and a cloud of dust.



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