Hey all, I hope you are all doing well, especially in these weird times eh?
As life is beginning to return back to our normal where we can begin to explore and travel again ( with safety precautions of course ), before we are able to update and blog about some new adventures we are having; I have dug deep in our archive of wonders and came across a personal favourite of ours, being Fort Nelson a royal armoury, in our hometown of Portsmouth, sitting proudly on top of the chalky hilltops of Portsdown Hill, overlooking Portsmouth.
A little background about Fort Nelson: The fort was built between 1860-1870’s and was purposely placed on the summit of Portsdown Hill so it would overlook the very important naval base below at the harbour mouth of Portsmouth. The fortification was a typical Palmeston fort which was protected by three Caponiers, these Caponiers were large in size and housed 13 inch mortars.
The fort housed around 172 officers and men. What was interesting about this fort is that it faced inland away from Portsmouth and it’s primary goal was to deter from any attacks inland, but fortunately they never saw any attacks or action from inland or the French via the English Channel if any attempts were made post 1870.
Inside the fort where you can explore all 19 acres of this beautiful place you will come across a plethora of artillery including 64- pounder rifle muzzled loaders, 7-inch rifled breech loaders, 6-inch howitzers and over 300 modern day super guns and pre-gunpowder era guns throughout the years.
Aswell as the ramparts of the fort, you are able to explore underground in the tunnels and they dive deep down through to barracks and you can feel what it would have been like back in those times with the holding cells and the officers quarters, so many different stories to learn from the people who worked and lived there.
There really is so much to see and explore for yourselves with plenty of historical facts placed throughout the ramparts and inside the museum you can visit here taking some history away with you. Something of interest is the biggest British gun to survive from the war, which is the magnificent 18 inch Railway Howitzer, a British railway gun that was developed during world war 1 but not used till the 1920’s. Weighing over 200 Double Decker buses and near to around 200 tonnes, it stands proudly preserved here at Fort Nelson. Unfortunately during our visit, the gun was kept preserved in a building outside which is only accessible during tours.
Great news about the museum and the fort is that it is free to enter, you only have to pay £3 for your parking which you can do at the front desk as you enter aswell as receiving a leaflet about the fort as you arrive.
Overall, you can spend the entire day here with family, the area is perfect for kids and teaching them about the war, as well as for history buffs with over 700 different artefacts and artillery to glance at, and if you get a little tired they have a lovely cafe to end up in to relax.
Thank you for reading! Check out our instagram for more updates and more adventures!