Arthurs Head Battery

Posted on November 14, 2022 / 9
Listing Type : Coastal Battery
Location : Australia

Fremantle Harbour is in the suburbs of Perth and the cities port.  Arthur’s Head Battery is located on the southern entrance to Fremantle Harbour.  The Battery mounted two 6-inch Mark VII guns and was completed in 1906. The Battery was used  until at least 1946.

The actual gun emplacements have been lost.  It was originally on a small knoll above the harbour, but part of the hill it stood on has been cut away, and the spoil removed.  A modern store building stands over the site now.  In the gorge of the battery, at about 50 metres height, the old Gunner’s Cottage and Laboratory from the original battery survive.

An item identified locally as one of the holdfast, presumably dumped here during clearance, can be seen on the shoreline at the adjacent Bathers Beach.  This would appear to be for a 6-inch Naval gun of some sort.

The emplacements were of the standard British design of about 1900.  Two adjacent gun pits with underground (cut and cover) works between.  This included the shell and cartridge stores with hoists under the guns.

Harbour Battery was initially an extension of Arthur’s Head Battery.  A single 6-pdr Hotchkiss Q.F. gun mounted on the South Mole, just outside the 6-inch Battery complex.  During World War 2 this battery was expanded to include two 6-pdr Hotchkiss, two 12-pdr Q.F. gun and two 75mm QF guns, half of the guns being mounted on the North Mole.  It is assumed that the use of the 75mm QF guns was an emergency measure.

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