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New Tavern Fort, Gravesend

4.3
Historic Site · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
New Tavern Fort is an historic artillery fort in Gravesend, Kent. Dating mostly from the 18th and 19th centuries, it is an unusually well-preserved example of an 18th-century fortification and remained in use for defensive purposes until the Second World War. It was built during the American War of Independence to guard the Thames against French and Spanish raiders operating in support of the newly formed United States of America. It was redesigned and rebuilt in the mid-19th century to defend against a new generation of iron-clad French warships.

By the start of the 20th century, the Thames defences had been moved further downriver to the estuary and the fort was disarmed. Its grounds were opened to the public as pleasure gardens, but the fort was taken back into military use temporarily during the Second World War. Today the fort and its magazines and other underground structures have been restored and are open to the public. It is unique in the UK for its display of guns and emplacements ranging from the 18th to the 20th centuries.

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New Tavern Fort reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
55 reviews
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4.5
TripAdvisor
  • £2.50 adult £1.00 child. Little boys in particular seem to love the big cannons and racing about the show, as children should. Not bad for history liking adults or child carers who want their...  more »
  • Located in the middle of Gravesend it has an ample car park but I found free parking at the canal basin (limited). On the river front it is an artillery fort in very good condition. I went very...  more »
Google
  • Apparently it's haunted and I've heard the odd cry emanating from I dunno where! It's like over 400 yes old and remarkably well kept for its age. Free to enter so definitely worth a look in if you're ever in town.
  • Great place for the kids to run around, and camber over the canons, in little holes where the Canon machinery was all houses, up the old walls etc, especially considering its free and just in a park. Combined the rest of the park and the playground, we spend a good hour or 2 there.
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