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Description: Fort Southwick
Date Listed: 24 September 1987
English Heritage Building ID: 146608
OS Grid Reference: SU6287306997
OS Grid Coordinates: 462873, 106997
Latitude/Longitude: 50.8591, -1.1081
Explore more of the area around Southwick and Widley, Hampshire at Explore Britain.
SU 60 NW SOUTHWICK AND WIDLEY PORTSDOWN HILL
13/12 Fort Southwick
One of a series of forts (Wallington (now demolished), Nelson, Southwick, Widley
and Purbrook) along the chalk ridge of Portsdown Hill, built for the defence of
Portsmouth against landward attack in the 1860s, and known as Palmerston's Folly.
Brick walls of English bond, the outer face of the defensive walls are of flint
with horizontal and vertical bands of brickwork and a blind arcade at the upper
level. The structure is partly within and above the natural ridge; a polygonal
plan with four vertical faces to the deep dry ditch, a fire step behind the
parapet, and two-storeyed caponiers at the three corners (to give raking fire
along the ditches). Within this outer framework is an embankment with open gun
emplacements at the top. Below the central parade ground there are brick-lined
passageways, ammunition stores, and staircases to the several points, and behind
the caponier positions sunken embrasures for mortars. The rear (south) of the
fort has a set of barracks, and the south face is a high brick wall, originally
protected by a continuous ditch; there are entrances at each side, once approached
by drawbridges, comprising bold 'Norman' doorways of stone, with recessed orders
of mouldings, above columns. The fort contains many interesting details of
fortification design. Scheduled Ancient Monument.
Note: the southern part of the fort lies within the City of Portsmouth.
Listing NGR: SU6463209041
This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.