A motorcyclist drives along the walls of the well of death. Allahabad, India


Motorcyclists and car drivers ride around vertical walls at high speed

The well of death is a popular event in India often displayed during large festivals throughout the year. Held in a makeshift cylindrical structure, around 30ft in diameter, cars and motorcycles are driven around the walls at great speed. The drivers perform stunts whilst driving along the vertical walls and collect money from the audience as they go past. The audience are positioned along the top of the walls of the structure. From there they can gaze down at the riders.

These images were taken during the festival of Magh Mela in Allahabad, 2014.

The well of death stadium. Allahabad, India Ticket vendor presenting ticket to the well of death show, Allahabad, India A worker at the gate checks tickets. Allahabad, India

Well of Death

The structure appears, and feels, less than stable. It shakes as the vehicles drive around its walls. The condition of the vehicles is poor. The crew are often fixing their motorcycles and cars, and very often have to be pushed to help them start. It is all an amazing spectacle though.

A member of the audience holds out money for a passing driver A driver grabs money from a spectator Three cars drive around the wals of the well of death