|Freshwater, Isle of Wight, England|
Fort Redoubt on the cliff of Freshwater Bay.
|In use||1856 onwards|
Freshwater Redoubt, also known as Fort Redoubt (map reference SZ345856) is an old Palmerston fort built in Freshwater Bay on the western end of the Isle of Wight. Construction work for the fort began in 1855 and was completed in 1856. It was finally sold in 1928 and has now been converted into a private residence.
The Caponier building in the ditch served as barrack accommodation for 24 men. With its iron window shutters and rifle slots the Caponier also provided a means of ditch defence. The original bridge had a section, which could be withdrawn, near the entrance gate, for defence purposes. The main building visible through the gate, was originally a single storey, flat roofed barrack comprising: three Officers’ Rooms, an Officers’ Kitchen, a Staff Sergeant's Quarters, and two rooms for 5 and 11 men.
The fort was designed with two batteries for a total of 7 guns. The Upper Battery, facing the sea, had four gun emplacements and a separate Lower Battery with three gun emplacements covered Freshwater Bay. Early muzzle loaded guns using gunpowder and firing cannon balls, were replaced over the years as military technology advanced.
The fort is on the Western headland of Freshwater Bay at the foot of Tennyson Down. It enjoys outstanding views of Freshwater Bay to the East and the English Channel to the South and West, with the Solent visible to the North across Freshwater and Yarmouth. The view from the top of the drive is of the Isle of Wight coast running along Compton Bay, with Brighstone Down beyond and continues past Atherfield Point, Chale and Blackgang, towards St. Catherine’s Point, with St. Boniface Down in the distance. The small tower visible on the rocks off Hanover Point is an artillery range marker built by the Army. The guns would always fire to seaward of this point
The fort is known locally as Fort Redoubt. It was sold by the Army in 1928 and is privately owned. The main building was converted into a two storey private residence in 1936, and further extended in 1976 but not finished. During the 1980s and 1990s it operated as a tea room. The current owners have completed their own accommodation in the main building and carried out landscaping improvements in the grounds to recover the original setting of the property. The bridge over the moat was replaced in 2011 and, like the original bridge, affords a view of the Caponier along the moat. Moonfleet cottage in the grounds was originally married quarters accommodation for the master gunner and is now a holiday cottage called Moonfleet  Since 1994, it has been a Grade II Listed Building.