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Report - Hubberstone Fort, Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire, Wales, May 2013

Discussion in 'Military Sites' started by PCWOX, May 31, 2013.

  1. PCWOX

    PCWOX 28DL Regular User
    Regular User

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    HISTORY
    Fort Hubberstone, on the west side of Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire, is a Grade II* Listed Building which belongs to a series of forts built as part of the inner line of defence of the Haven following the Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom. Together with Popton Fort on the opposite shore, it provided an interlocking field of fire, and represented the last layer of defence before reaching the Royal Naval dockyard at Pembroke Dock. Construction began in 1863 and was completed in 1865 at a cost of £55,000. It is a large battery, with eleven guns in casemates, eight in an open battery above, with another nine in an open flank battery, and a large barracks to the rear.
    The barracks had capacity for 250 men, sourced from the Royal Pembrokeshire Artillery and the 24th Regt of Foot. Recruitment however was frequently constrained by the isolation of the fort, lacking the appeal of more urban stations. The fort was often required to fire live practice rounds, and in 1894 participated in experiments to illuminate targets with searchlights so they could be engaged at night. Notoriously, in 1875 Lt Walter of the militia was murdered by a Doctor Alder in a drunken brawl.
    The fort was abandoned after World War I as a consequence of the Haldane Reforms. A 1919 proposal to convert the structure into social housing came to nothing. World War II saw the fort once again in active use, when it was used as an air raid shelter and army camp for American military personnel.
    On a good site, the fort has fallen into disrepair. The current owners had plans to restore the structure, but these have fallen through. Owned by Milford Haven Port Authority, the site is not currently open to the public, and has been the scene of non-fatal injuries to trespassers. In 2011 it was named as the fifth most endangered archaeological site in the UK by British Archaeology, which prompted a campaign to seek a long term sustainable use of the site.
    Visited with a non-member (my brother). A fascinating mooch this, and very overgrown in parts.

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    Just pigeons living here nowadays....
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    Seek, and ye shall find ;)
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