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Fog battery at Battery Point, Lundy

A Scheduled Monument in Area not comprised in any Parish-Lundy Island, Devon

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.1728 / 51°10'21"N

Longitude: -4.6785 / 4°40'42"W

OS Eastings: 212855.367651

OS Northings: 144913.198419

OS Grid: SS128449

Mapcode National: GBR GTTL.9QV

Mapcode Global: VH2S3.VSJB

Entry Name: Fog battery at Battery Point, Lundy

Scheduled Date: 10 June 1998

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016038

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27649

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Area not comprised in any Parish-Lundy Island

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Lundy

Church of England Diocese: Exeter

Details

The monument includes a fog warning battery with two guns and associated
buildings. These include a dam for the water supply, a cliff path, two
cottages, privies and a powder magazine. The battery was operated by members
of the Trinity House service who lived in the cottages with their wives.
During foggy weather the sound of the guns was intended to warn shipping of
the presence of the island since the lighthouse (now known as The Old
Lighthouse) was often obscured. The complex was built in 1863. The Old
Lighthouse is the subject of a separate scheduling.
The buildings are well constructed of dressed stone and include two cottages
placed back to back, sharing a slate roof. These were the living quarters for
the operators. They were built on a platform quarried from the cliff and set
about 25m above sea level.
The privies are opposite the cottages, discharging over the cliff. There are
the remains of the toilet bowls in the concrete floor. The magazine was
attached to the privies and had a separate brick vaulted roof which also
survives.
Further down the cliff to the west is the battery, consisting of a granite
building with a corrugated iron roof. In the event of an explosion this roof
would have been blown away without damaging the surrounding buildings or
endangering the operators. Flanking this building are two 18-pound cannon on a
sloping floor of brick. The wheels of the guns are set in grooved granite
setts and the recoil of the discharge was therefore absorbed by the slope of
the floor and controlled by the tracks.
The guns are of iron and bear the royal cypher GR indicating that they belong
to the reign of George I. They were therefore obsolete when the battery was
constructed. They have been spiked to prevent any further use.
The whole group of buildings is accessed by a well-constructed cliff path with
a granite retaining wall which passes the dam for a water supply and a water
cistern in the small yard of the cottages. The dam is well preserved and
retains a cast iron plate to control the flow of water.
Above the cottages to the east is a small building used as a piggery or a coal
store which is not as well constructed and is consequently more ruinous.
There is a well in the ground to the west of the cottages with a granite lid
so heavy it cannot be easily lifted. The purpose of this is unknown.

MAP EXTRACT
The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Lundy is a small, steep sided island in the Bristol Channel, 16m north of
Hartland Point, north Devon. Aligned north-south, it is 6km long by 1km wide
and supports a predominately moorland vegetation. The 100m high cliffs and
tabular form give it a striking appearance, visible in clear weather from
parts of south west England and south Wales.
Lundy's remoteness and (until the 19th century construction of the Beach Road)
its inaccessibility, combined with a lack of shelter and cultivable soils, has
meant that it has escaped more recent occupation or development. It therefore
preserves a remarkable variety of archaeological sites from early prehistory
(c.8000 BC) onwards, representing evidence for habitation, fortification,
farming and industry. There are also archaeological remains in the waters
surrounding the island - over 150 shipwrecks are already recorded. Most of the
island's archaeology is well documented from detailed survey in the 1980s and
1990s.

The fog battery on the west coast of Lundy is a rare survival with most of its
components still visible. Together these give a clear impression of how the
fog battery operated, as well as illustrating the relations between domestic
accommodation and the work place in a marginal coastal environment in the
late-19th century.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Thackray, C, The National Trust Archaeological Survey, (1989)

Source: Historic England

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