St Lucia

Posted on September 17, 2020 / 37
Listing Type : Coaling Station
Location : Caribbean Sea

On St Lucia the principal port was at the fine harbour of Castries in the north.  This harbour was initially used by the French East Indies Company but between 1663 and 1814 the Island changed hands with both the French and British alternating control.  In 1814, with the culmination of the Napoleonic Wars, the British took control of the Island which they retained until Independence in 1979.

The defence of Castries Harbour was started by the French in the 1700s and continued with British control.  The principal batteries while a British defended port were:

  • Fort Charlotte (old Morne Fortress)
  • Apostles Battery
  • Combermere Barracks
  • Fort Rodney & Pigeon Island
  • La Toc Battery

Castries was designated as a coaling station by the British in 1881 and was therefore treated as a priority for coastal defence batteries.  The harbour at Castries was never a major priority, often because of competition with the nearby Bahamas.  In December 1904 The Committee of Imperial Defence decided that St Lucia was to be abandoned as a defended station.  (TNA CAB/36/6/100).

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