Eastney Barracks

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Eastney Barracks
Eastney, Hampshire
Gunners Row, Eastney - geograph.org.uk - 36005.jpg
Gunners Row - the former barracks
Eastney Barracks is located in Hampshire
Eastney Barracks
Eastney Barracks
Location within Hampshire
Coordinates50°47′08″N 1°03′17″W / 50.7855°N 1.0547°W / 50.7855; -1.0547Coordinates: 50°47′08″N 1°03′17″W / 50.7855°N 1.0547°W / 50.7855; -1.0547
TypeRoyal Marines Base
Site history
Built forAdmiralty
In use1867-1995
Garrison information
OccupantsPortsmouth Division, Royal Marines

Eastney Barracks was a military installation occupied by the Royal Marines and located at Eastney near Portsmouth.


Eastney Barracks, designed by William Scamp (assistant director, Admiralty Works Department), was built as headquarters for the Royal Marine Artillery, who moved in from Fort Cumberland in 1867.[1] After the amalgamation of the Royal Marine Light Infantry and Royal Marine Artillery in 1923, Forton Barracks was closed and Eastney Barracks served as headquarters for the Portsmouth Division of the Corps. The series of seven linked blocks facing the sea forms the second longest barracks frontage in the country (after the Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich).[2] The ensemble has been called "the best and most complete barracks of the post-Crimean War period".[3] Eastney Barracks remained the Corps Headquarters until 1995, when it was sold and converted to private housing.[4]

The Royal Marines Museum, established there in 1958, was accommodated in the former officers' mess at Eastney Barracks from 1972 to 2017.[5] Having deemed the building 'unsuitable' the National Museum of the Royal Navy put the collections into storage, and in December 2020 the former officers' mess was sold to Grand Hotel Excelsior International for conversion into a "luxury hotel".[6]


The first cadets established by the Admiralty (now the Royal Navy) were started at Eastney Barracks on 14 February 1901. The Royal Marines Artillery Cadet Corps was set up to gainfully occupy the spare time of Royal Marines Artillermen's sons, with entry later widened to all services and then civilian children. The RMACC eventually became the Royal Marines Volunteer Cadet Corps, part of the Royal Navy's Volunteer Cadet Corps. The VCC vacated Eastney Barracks in 1991 and is now based at HMS Excellent.[7]

Local folklore and legend[edit]

The Barracks are reportedly home to two ghosts. One is a young girl, seen around the main steps to the entry, who according to local legend was crushed to death when she ran in front of a horse-drawn carriage. The other is the smell of burning and a depressing atmosphere, experienced by staff in the attic, which has been linked to the local legend of a 19th-century officer called Colonel Wolf who burnt his love letters and shot himself there after the end of a love affair.[8] It was therefore the location for an episode of the Antix Productions series Most Haunted Live! broadcast on 7 May 2006 as part of its Panic In Portsmouth strand, which included episodes from Wymering Manor and Southsea Castle.[9]


Listed buildings[edit]

Other structures[edit]


  1. ^ "Royal Marines Museum - Commandants of the Royal Marines Portsmouth Division". Memorials in Portsmouth. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved 28 May 2016.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  2. ^ a b Historic England. "Bamford House, Dowell House, Finch House, Halliday House former Long Barracks and Screen Walls to East and West, Marine Gate harvey House, Prettyjohn House, Wilkinson House (1387087)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  3. ^ Pevsner, N (2002). The Buildings of England: Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0300096064.
  4. ^ "Inland Planning" (PDF). Portsmouth Society News. August 1995. Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 October 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
  5. ^ "Royal Marines Museum to be moved to new home in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard". Portsmouth News. 17 October 2013. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
  6. ^ "Former Marines Museum sold in 5-star hotel deal". Royal Navy. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  7. ^ "History of the RMVCC". Volunteer Cadet Corps. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  8. ^ Scanlan, David (2013). Paranormal Hampshire. Amberley Publishing. ISBN 978-1848682573.
  9. ^ Most Haunted Live! at IMDb
  10. ^ Historic England. "Former Guardroom, Marine Gate the Gatehouse (1387086)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  11. ^ Historic England. "Former Clock Tower and Offices, Marine Gate the Armoury, the Drill House and the Clocktower the Colonnades (1387048)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  12. ^ Historic England. "Main Gate and Perimeter Walls, Marine Gate (1387089)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  13. ^ Historic England. "Former Eastney House, Linking Archway and Railings teapot Row (1387085)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  14. ^ Historic England. "The Royal Marines Museum (1387090)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  15. ^ Conservation are report


  • Ambler, John and Little, Matthew, 2008. Sea Soldiers of Portsmouth. A pictorial History of the Royal Marines at Eastney and Fort Cumberland, Halsgrove, Somerset, ISBN 978-1841147437
  • Lane, Andrew, 1998. The Royal Marines Barracks Eastney. A pictorial history, Halsgrove Publishing, ISBN 1874448922