Ancient Monuments

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No. 5 Battery, Stokes Bay Lines

A Scheduled Monument in Anglesey, Hampshire

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Latitude: 50.7794 / 50°46'45"N

Longitude: -1.1435 / 1°8'36"W

OS Eastings: 460484.661

OS Northings: 98103.0207

OS Grid: SZ604981

Mapcode National: GBR 9C2.5Q7

Mapcode Global: FRA 87H1.2C2

Entry Name: No. 5 Battery, Stokes Bay Lines

Scheduled Date: 30 October 1972

Last Amended: 30 September 2015

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1001829

English Heritage Legacy ID: HA 475

County: Hampshire

Electoral Ward/Division: Anglesey

Built-Up Area: Gosport

Traditional County: Hampshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Hampshire

Church of England Parish: Alverstoke St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Portsmouth


Battery, built in the early 1860s as part of the Stokes Bay Lines to defend the western flank of Portsmouth Royal Dockyard.

Source: Historic England


The scheduled area comprises the surviving ramparts of No. 5 Battery and its expense stores. The scheduling is divided into two separate areas of protection by the break in the ramparts made for a road in the 1950s. The northern area included the northern flanking rampart and one expense store. The southern area includes the central and southern flanking rampart and the remaining three expense stores. The remainder of the site including the gorge of the battery and the area beyond the ramparts falls outside the scheduled area.

The battery has a splayed plan, facing south-west, with three earthwork ramparts enclosing the open gorge (yard) to the rear. Most of the ramparts survive, apart from a section at the angle between the northern and central rampart removed for a roadway. The gorge is at a higher level than the area in front of the ramparts suggesting that the front rampart may have been close to the line of the natural cliff. The outer face of the ramparts included narrow terraces at mid-height shown on late-C19 plans and 1940s aerial photographs which may survive under the thick undergrowth which covers the ramparts. It appears that nothing survives of the four gun positions shown in 1892 although it is possible that some of the metal gun tracers may survive as these are mentioned in some sources.

The four expense stores (magazines) are rectangular brick-vaulted structures projecting back from the earthen rampart. The interiors are below ground level entered via a descending flight of concrete steps with later brick parapet walls. The arched double plank doors survive but with replacement fittings. Ammunition issue hatches giving onto the rampart, modified from original shell recesses, possibly at the time the machine guns were installed in 1901, are evident. The interiors of the expense stores were not inspected.

All fencing, modern concrete steps, modern tubular steel handrails and their footings, as well as the small brick store at the south-eastern corner of the western section of the ramparts are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath all these features is included.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

No. 5 Battery, Stokes Bay Lines, a mid-Victorian artillery battery built in the 1860s, is scheduled for the following principal reasons:
* Historical interest: No. 5 Battery is an integral part of the Stokes Bay Lines which are of national importance as part of front-line defences against a French invasion threat;
* Survival: the battery is a substantial earthwork and survives reasonably well, retaining the four expense stores;
* Documentation: the original extent and armaments of the battery are well documented.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Crick, Timothy, Ramparts of Empire - The Fortifications of Sir William Jervois Royal Engineer 1821-1897, (2012), 40-60
Moore, David, Solent Papers No. 8 - The Stokes Bay Defences, (2010)
Victorian Forts (Portsmouth) - Stokes Bay Lines Battery No. 5, accessed 30 July 2015 from
Mike Williams - Site Record - Qinetiq Site/ Battery No. 5 (Historic England 2015)

Source: Historic England

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