Tuesday, 31 May 2011

BH Monday at Fort Nelson

We decided to make a trip to Fort Nelson for this Bank Holiday Monday. The weather forecast was for rain during the day so we went there knowing that some of it is indoors so we could hopefully skip the showers. As it was it didn't rain until we just got into the car to return home, so it was a good day.

Fort Nelson was built in the 1860s, as part of a chain of fortifications protecting 
the great naval harbour of Portsmouth in Hampshire and its Royal Dockyard 
from a feared French invasion.
Covering nearly 19 acres and now fully restored, Fort Nelson sits majestically 
atop Portsdown Hill, with amazing views of the Solent and the Meon Valley. 
The Fort stands today as a monument to the skills and ingenuity of 
Victorian engineering and architecture.
Opened in 1995 as home to the Royal Armouries collection of artillery, Fort Nelson has 
over 350 big guns and historic cannon on display, all part of the national collection 
of arms and armour. 

It's a really impressive Fort, and a free day out although donations are welcome to help it's upkeep, keeping it free to visit. As it was clear and dry on arrival we headed to the top and walked around the Ramparts and took in the views.
 Imogen was very excited to explore the Fort

There was going to be a live firing of a canon at 1pm so we went along to see that and wow was it loud, twice too. You can pay £25 to fire it so long as you are aged 14 or over, Imogen decided she wouldn't want to do it though.
Big Bang!!!
Imogen really enjoyed having her camera today, and I could see myself in the way she was framing photos, she's watched me enough times! We saw many many cannons and big guns - I think Imogen may well have taken a photo of all of them!

 Big Guns and Cannons

On the subject of photos, Imogen took 161 photos today, and would you believe it ... I took 161 photos too, spooky.
Imogen the budding photographer
Model of HMS Warrior which Imogen remembered going on

Imogen sat here at the front top of the Fort overlooking Portsmouth - can you see the Spinnaker Tower through the Arrow hole slits?

Imogen on the wall
Here it is closer view through the slit ...
 ... see the Spinnaker Tower now?

The banks were covered in parts with beautiful Oxeye Daisies which we both enjoyed photographing.

Beautiful Oxeye Daisies

We also ventured down the very long cold dark tunnel taking us deep underground, it was a great adventure. Through the tunneled bedrock I pointed out the seams of flint in the rocks to Imogen which she thought were fascinating and wanted to know more. I talked about Geology study (something Mommy studied years ago) and Imogen said she wanted to study Geology so I can see a little project possibility there for us, following in her Mama's footsteps with her love of the natural environment.

 Tunnel view

I took a photo of these buckets for sand and water - a reminder that fire when the fort was in use could have been disastrous, and a lovely image too.

Some more photos outside on the way home. We had a good day, I would recommend a visit if you're nearby.


  1. A photographer and a geologist in the making. Not bad. Something about bank holidays that make us want to go out exploring too. Sounds like you had a wonderful day.

  2. lovely photos, looks like you had a lovely day.
    i need your help.. my elderflower champagne has mould on the top in the fermenting bucket!! :( what have i done wrong? x

  3. Hi missking - The mould may just be a by-product of the yeasts - I remember reading about it when I started making the champagne, we had a little and I just skimmed it off and strained the liquid really well and it was fine - nothing returned and the drink was fine and caused no ill. I don't think you've done anything wrong, it's probably just part of the brewing process. Have you taken the flowers out yet? If they've been in for 2 or more days and the foam has started I'd strain and bottle it now. Hope that helps.

  4. thank you dawn. so glad i checked the laptop as i was about to throw it away! i we didnt have any throth, but i have given it a good straining and bottled it this afternoon. fingers crossed!!! thank you so much for your help!


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