Established in 2012, the Slough Fort Preservation Trust (SFPT) was formed from a group of volunteers who all had an interest in history, and the fort. Forming a trust, the group work tirelessly to care for the fort by maintaining it and restoring it to become a public museum. In 2016, Beyond the Point attended one of their open days to take a look around.
Situated in the Allhallows caravan park, the fort was constructed in 1867 in a ‘D’ formation. Directly opposite Canvey Point, the fort would one of the first lines of defence for any aircraft or boats heading into the Thames towards London. Slough Fort is quite small considered to others built around this time, and is one of many along the Thames/Medway coast. It was armed with rifled breech-loading guns in seven casemates originally, replaced around the turn of the century with better breech-loading guns on disappearing carriages which were mounted in concrete batteries either side of the fort which expanded its overall small size. All guns were removed by 1912, but it was used as a command post in WW1 before decommissioning in 1920. Strangely, it was sold and used as a small zoo in 1929. In 1938 it became an observation post forming part of anti-invasion defences in early WW2. Allegedly it also saw some use in air defence against V-1 flying bombs, but returned to civilian redundancy after wartime.
Ground Level & Exterior
Wing Battery & Underground Magazines
We also visited the fort in 2016 when it was in an earlier stage of restoration. Note the rougher condition of many of the areas. The fort continues to be under restoration to this day and hence our current photographs will too capture a state of the fort prior to change.