Telegraph Bay Battery

Aden, Yemen
Posted on April 24, 2023 / 14
Listing Type : Coastal Battery
Location : Yemen

Telegraph Bay was a battery just to the South of Fort Tarshyne which is believed to have been built about 1886 and is not shown on a map dated 1887 (TNA WO 78/4186).

The bay was so named in 1870 when the British Indian Submarine Telegraph Company,  renamed in 1872 as Eastern Telegraph Company, landed the undersea cable from Bombay.  Aden subsequently became a communications hub for cable traffic between India and the United Kingdom.  The Eastern Telegraph Company established their offices on the headland on the South side of the Bay.

Telegraph Bay Battery was considered Inspector General of Fortifications 1882.  Two 7-inch RBL were to be mounted in a casemate overlooking Telegraph Bay, adjacent to Fort Tarshyne.  In 1885 building of the fortifications, as discussed in the previous years started. With Telegraph Bay Battery now destined to received one 9-inch RML gun, later increased to two, with the second one relocated from West Cliff Battery.

In 1888 the second 9-inch RML was finally installed at Telegraph Bay Battery, and there were plans to also install two old 7-inch RBL gun.  It is not believed that these two 7-inch RBL guns were ever mounted.

A plan of the battery, dated about 1898 in TNA WO 78/4863, shows the battery with four guns.  The two in the centre appear to the old 9-inch RML gun with one 7-inch RBL on each flank.  The south flank of the battery is protected by a musketry parapet and Gardner Machine gun emplacement.

There is a note held int eh National Archives  from 1892 (TNA WO 192.1) which states that Telegraph Bay Battery should mount a single 3-pdr Q.F. gun, presumably to counter Motor Torpedo Boats.

The site of the battery has been redeveloped.

The plan on the right is based on a map, dated 1885 held by the National Archives UK under reference WO 78.4863.  The battery is shown with four emplacements, two 9-inch RML and two 7-inch RBL.  Initially only one 9-inch RML was mounted, increased later to two. The two 7-inch RBL were presumably the ones in the casemated battery above Telegraph Bay, adjacent to Fort Tarshayne.  It is believed that these old guns were never moved into Telegraph Bay Battery,

Plan of Telegraph Bay Battery

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