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Historic England Research Records

Harwich Redoubt

Hob Uid: 618941
Location :
Essex
Tendring
Harwich
Grid Ref : TM2615032150
Summary : The Harwich Redoubt was built between 1807 and 1809 on the orders of Major Bryce, Royal Engineer in charge of the Eastern District. It was designed as a bomb-proof fortification with effective artillery power to withstand lengthy siege. The redoubt became operational in 1810 with the main role of protecting this important deep water harbour in the event of invasion or attack by Napoleon's forces. It is situated on a slight hill towards the eastern side of the Harwich peninsula, flanked by Harbour Crescent to the north and east, Main Road to the west, and Mayflower Avenue to the south. It was remodelled in 1861 to the same basic plan, however military use of the redoubt ended in 1910.The redoubt is built of brick with masonry details and exterior facings. It is circular in plan with an internal courtyard, brick vaulted chambers and is encircled by a dry moat. The ground floor has 18 rooms or casemates radiating from the open central parade ground (the Parade). These served as stores for ammunition and general supplies, a cookhouse, ablution room, latrines and accommodation for a garrison of 250 men and six officers. The upper level contains the batteries, originally for ten 24-pounder cannon, one of which dated 1865 has been excavated from moat. Some original fittings including iron railings, hoists and lanterns in the magazine walls have survived.
More information : [TM 26153216] The Redoubt, Tower Hill. Scheduled. (1,2)

The Redoubt (name board) built 1808-10, now preserved by Harwich Society and open to the public (see illus with TM 23 SE 6). (3-4)

Scheduled. For more information see the Register of Scheduled Monuments. (5)

Redoubt. 1808-1810. Of brick and granite. Circular plan form with internal courtyard and brick vaulted chambers. Circular dry moat and original drawbridge replaced by concrete span. Some original fittings including iron railings, hoist and lantern in magazine wall. Designed as bomb-proof fortification ith effective artillery power to withstand lengthy siege. Remodelled in 1861 to same basic plan. Upper level contains batteries, originally for ten 24-pounder cannon, one of which dated 1865 has been excavated from moat. Moat revetment in brick. (6)

Only three redoubts were constructed, at Eastbourne, Dymchurch, and Harwich. Whatever their merits for coastal defence, their disadvantages were considerable. The garrisons were relatively small and costly to maintain, the weight of broadside against shipping was less than a comparable battery. Although they had an all round field of fire, the all round weight of fire was inadequate. (7)

History and description of the redoubt. It ceased its military use in 1910 and was acquired by the town in 1920. It was not used during WWII, and was scheduled in 1968. (8)

Further reference please see source. (9)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" 1960
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Source Number : 2
Source : Ancient monuments in England : a list prepared by the Department of the Environment, corrected to 31st December 1971
Source details :
Page(s) : 91
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Source Number : 3
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 PAS 6 5 75
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Source Number : 4
Source : Oral information, correspondence (not archived) or staff comments
Source details : Oral: Mrs Cooper, President Harwich Society
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Source Number : 5
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : 11-Feb-00
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Source Number : 6
Source : List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest
Source details : Tendring, 18-APR-1994
Page(s) :
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Plates :
Vol(s) : 609-1
Source Number : 7
Source : Fort : the international journal of fortification and military architecture
Source details :
Page(s) : 19-26
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 2, 1976
Source Number : 8
Source : Fort : the international journal of fortification and military architecture
Source details : Trollope, C
Page(s) : May-30
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 11, 1983
Source Number : 9
Source : An Assessment of the East Coast Martello Towers
Source details : Research Department Report 89-2007
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Georgian
Display Date : Built 1807-09
Monument End Date : 1809
Monument Start Date : 1807
Monument Type : Circular Redoubt, Magazine, Hoist, Privy House, Cookhouse, Battery
Evidence : Extant Building
Monument Period Name : Victorian
Display Date : Remodelled 1861
Monument End Date : 1861
Monument Start Date : 1861
Monument Type : Circular Redoubt
Evidence : Extant Building
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Closed 1910
Monument End Date : 1910
Monument Start Date : 1910
Monument Type : Circular Redoubt
Evidence : Extant Building

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : EX 145
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 29443
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Listed Building List Entry Legacy Uid
External Cross Reference Number : 366573
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TM 23 SE 38
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, ENGLISH HERITAGE: EAST COAST MARTELLO TOWERS
Activity type : MANAGEMENT SURVEY
Start Date : 2007-01-01
End Date : 2007-12-31