Beacon Hill Battery

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Beacon Hill Battery
Beacon Hill Battery is located in Essex
Beacon Hill Battery
Beacon Hill Battery
Coordinates 51°56′17″N 1°17′21″E / 51.9381°N 1.2892°E / 51.9381; 1.2892Coordinates: 51°56′17″N 1°17′21″E / 51.9381°N 1.2892°E / 51.9381; 1.2892
Site information
Condition Derelict, overgrown
Site history
Built 1889-92
Materials Earth

Beacon Hill Battery (also known as Beacon Hill Fort) was built to defend the port of Harwich, Essex.

The first fortification built on the site was a blockhouse, constructed in 1534 during the reign of Henry VIII. This site was abandoned within ten years. After the death of Henry VIII the site was rearmed. By 1625 the site had again fallen into disrepair and Harwich was considered to be defenceless.

Director tower for the twin 6 Pounder gun position at Beacon Cliff, Harwich

The site remained out of use until a redoubt of ten guns was built in 1810. In 1862 these guns were upgraded as a result of the 1860 Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom.

By the 1880s the fort was considered outdated and in 1889 work began on a totally new fort, which was completed in 1892. [1]After World War I the fort was disarmed and sold. In 1940 it was bought back into service as a consequence of World War II and a twin 6 Pounder gun position and director tower were built. It became known as Cornwallis Battery. It was manned by men of the 515th Coast Regiment, Royal Artillery.

The fort was finally decommissioned in 1956 on the dissolution of coast artillery in the United Kingdom.

According to a report in the Metro (British newspaper) on 26 September 2014, the World War II radar tower at the fort was the least-visited attraction in Great Britain in 2013. There were 6 visitors.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Plans of Beacon Hill Battery, The National Archives, WO78/5141

External links[edit]