On the 21st Feb 2013, East Fort was proud to host a visit of the Royal Artillery’s 14 (Cole’s Kop) Battery during their visit to Cape Town. The visit was arranged by “Hout Bay Gunner “ Colin Doyle who organised the tour of members of the UK based battery with whom Colin’s old regiment has fraternal links. In real life Colin is a retired Colonel who remains the longest serving gunner of the South African Artillery Formation.
The 12th Jan 1900 was a point in history when South Africa’s politics were divided but the days event celebrated the lasting military unity of our two countries. Thank you Colin for spreading the word of Hout Bay’s East Fort and helping us to maintain the links of our Military Heritage. The report below is an extract from an SANDF publication.
Web Masters Comment:
There are a few journalistic errors in the above text which are forgiven. Hout Bay’s East Fort was built by the Pondicherry Regiment (a mercenary company based in what was a French enclave now called Puducherry on the Indian Coromandel Coast). The guns, often termed as “long guns” are all 18 pounders originally placed there in 1782-3 cast in Sweden c.1760. They probably were requisitioned from VOC ships in Table Bay.
Nelson’s “VICTORY” had much bigger guns but also had large Carronades (or “smashers”) which fired 68 pdr round shot and were revolutionary in their day. Mounted on the forecastle deck they were able to “traverse” and fire forward as the ship approached an enemy line. The “VICTORY” was classified as a first rate ship of the line of 100 guns (‘long’ guns on three decks). It was normal not to include the carronades in the count.
A nation that turns its back on its history, the lessons and experiences of the past, good or bad, undermines the foundations of its future.