This is an exciting time for the future of the Great Lines and Chatham's Napoleanic Fort Amherst. In December 2008 it was decided by votes from members of the general public attending a meeting at Fort Amherst,to call the new park "The Great Lines Heritage Park". By March 2011 government "Parklands" funds are to be spent on restoring,constructing new facilities and improving public access to Fort Amherst, the Inner Lines and the Great Lines. The lower lines section of the park,known as "Admirals Gardens" will be opened to the public in September 2009.
For more information about the park see the Chatham World Heritage Website
I have decided to make this "unofficial" section about the currently unrestored (at the time of writing, February 2009) area of Fort Amherst. Brilliant work has already been carried out by volunteers at Fort Amherst to clear undergrowth from parts of the unrestored area.
The upper Amherst unrestored area consists of the Spur Battery,Prince William's Bastion,parts of their enclosing dry ditches and the Tenaile,which is a sloping piece of land in the dry ditches in front of the Amherst Redoubt. It's purpose was to was protect the exposed curtain wall of the Redoubt from attack.
In the following sections i will be featuring the structures that can be found in these area's.
Please note,the unrestored area is only open to the public by buying an "Extended Tour Ticket" on "advertised open days only",or other booked events at the fort involved with using the unrestored area.
Please see the Fort Amherst Website for events,open days and tour details.
1879 map of part of the fort Amherst complex.The Fort Amherst unrestored area is in and around the W shaped part near the bottom. (Map Courtesy of Kyn)
Access to the Spur Battery,Prince Williams Bastion and part of the dry ditch system is through this small tunnel on the Belvedere Battery. The tunnel goes under the ramparts to a gate. The building on the left is the Amherst Guardhouse which originally led to the Amherst Redoubt.
The tunnel also leads to this small courtyard at one end of the Amherst Guardhouse. Loops holes in the wall defended the dry ditch the other side.
Gateway from the dry ditch side.