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VOC West Blockhouse and Battery
Hout Bay district, Western Cape

Date:1780s : 1794 : 1804
Type:Military artefact
Style:Military structure
Status:Ruin 1827


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34°03'20.14" S 18°20'51.66" E Alt: 4m

When the Netherlands declared war on England in 1780 the English sent a naval force to occupy the Cape. Their allies, the French, anticipating this move, landed the Pondicherry Regiment at the Cape, which lay down a battery of 20 pieces of cannon on the western side of Hout Bay. In 1794 during the wars of the Revolution, the battery was replaced by three new ones named Sluijsken, Gordon and Little Gibraltar. In the time of the First British Occupation (1795-1802) these became derelict. With Batavian Republic rule (1803-1806) these were reinstated. After the Second British occupation these fortifications were dismantled by order of the Cape government. These ruinous relics remain important reminders of this period in South African history.

See also VOC East Fort.

Writings about this entry

Alberts, Paul. 1992. South African military buildings photographed : an historical heritage. Cape Town: The Gallery Press. pg 34, 35 ill