The Shornemead Fort was originally designed to be able to house 13 cannons, and work began in 1847, finishing 6 years later. Unfortunately, the ground that the fort stands on is extremely marshy and proved to be incapable of supporting a structure as large as the one proposed. As a result, the fort was completely rebuilt.
The new fort was in the shape of a D, with the curved area being for gun placements and casemates, and behind that were barracks and admin buildings. The same problems with the marshy ground again caused major problems for the fort. In spite of superficial strengthening work being carried out on the magazines, it was decided by 1904 that Shornemead Fort could not possibly prove effective and withstand an attack that it was felt she would face, and the fort was disarmed. No further work took place around the fort until two 5.5inch guns were put in place during WWII; these were quickly decommissioned at the end of the war. During the 1950s, the Army School of Demolition destroyed the barracks.
Date Of Visit: 29/11/03