Report number: 116/2001



Title The Western Heights, Dover, Kent. Report No. 6: The Entrances to the Fortress: 19th-century Infantry and Artillery Fortifications: Survey Report
Summary Between April and November 1998, the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England (RCHME) carried out survey and analysis of the buildings, underground structures and earthworks associated with the entrances into the 19th-century fortress on the Western Heights in Dover. Built in two main phases, 1804-16, and 1858-67, the fortress comprised three powerful independent forts and redoubts - the Citadel, the Drop Redoubt and the North Centre Bastion - linked by a series of defensive ditches and banks called the Lines. The result was a continuous barrier closing off the ridge, further protected by sheer cliffs along the southern face. At the end of the first construction phase in 1815, access to the fortress was through two main entrances; the first, South Lines Bridge, was located at the south-western corner and the second, North Entrance, was situated at a narrow point of the ridge towards the north-eastern end of the fortress, where the North Military Road completed its more moderate ascent from Dover town. A third entrance, called South Entrance or Archcliffe Gate, was added in the 1860s as part of a major revision of the southern defences of the Heights. All of the entrances were still in use during the Second World War but in 1963 the imposing Archcliffe Gate was demolished and the North Entrance was by-passed. The South Lines Bridge has been lost to modern road developments. (This was report 27/2001 in a previous series)
Series Other
Pages 51
Authors
  • Brown, Moraig
  • Williams, A
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