For over 50 years Pyestock was at the forefront of gas turbine development. It was probably the largest site of its kind in the world. V bomber, Harrier and Tornado engines were tested on site, and the power of the air house allowed Concorde's engines to be tested at 2,000 mph. Every gas turbine installed in Royal Navy ships was checked here; captured Soviet engines were discreetly examined.

Cell 3 (pictured) was mostly underground and was a supersonic replacement of Cell 2, allowing for higher speeds and a greater engine temperature range.

Later in life this test cell, among other features, was used as part of Massard Industries solar plant in the film Sahara.

It was the first stop on our tour of the site, and we were anxious not to get trapped inside while security lurked above. There were one or two jumpy moments while we tried to figure out if we could hear voices, rain, footsteps or pigeons above.

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