These buildings at the Apostle Battery are just a few of many which extend across the site. In Singapore on Sentosa Island (Fort Siloso) a similar WWII battery has been restored as a Military Heritage Tourism Destination. It is very popular and attracts visitors from across the World.
Robben Island. Gun restoration Project Manager, André vom Hagen demonstrates the operation of the breach and ram mechanisms of a fully restored 9.2” gun. It is now acknowledged as the finest example remaining world-wide.
Section 27 of the NHRA requires that owners of declared heritage sites (e.g.TMNP) prepare reports regarding the “special qualities” and heritage importance of sites for the attention of our heritage agencies. Such a report was made in 2000 (Click on Picture Rt). However, its reccommendations would appear to have been ignored. A similar report was commissioned in 2017 with a different consultant group with most of the information regurgitated and reaffirmed from the 2000 report.
It is sad that expensive reports are ignored as was the case with a similar report compiled for East Fort early in 2017. It succeeded one commissioned for East Fort in 2002 paid for by the HBHT. The only thing that counts is DELIVERY, in this case conservation of heritage assets: - which is not happening!
The HB&LHT was recently invited to comment on the most recent Apostle Battery Report. Our comments can be downloaded from:-
Page: TMNP & SANPARKS 322 The comments are to the point and ask the question why does it take so long for our heritage authorities to act? The problem is cowered on another part of the Website at Page: East Fort Ans Law 267 .
We believe that the Impasse is due to the fact that the Apostle Battery was appropriated to the wrong State owned Enterprise (TMNP) and that it should have been appropriated to the CoCT.
This is an example of the millions of Rands worth of damage caused by neglect. Due to poor management and the implementation of a simple security plan. It is likely that it will be impossible to restore the guns to anything like their original condition.
Like East Fort, The Apostle Battery was built to defend the City of Cape Town. It is on the Cape’s most important Tourism Artery and the CoCT have the resources and expertise to support it as a Tourism Destination in co-operation with the community. The NHRA is flexible enough to allow it to be administered by the City . Why has it taken so long for our authorities to act ?
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.