|THE TILBURY FORT
At the entrance to the river Thames, opposite Gravesend
Built low lying with extensive earthworks to withstand heavy bombardment
from enemy ships attempting to enter the Thames.
Sir Martin Beckman's original plan was of a pentagon;
the bastion next the water was never built, although piles were sunk.
The Water Gate of 1672.
In the last quarter of the 17th century artillery had become the main weapon of war.
There were substantial underground powder magazines.
In conjunction with batteries across the river at Gravesend the river was completely covered by heavy guns.
"... on the platform are placed one hundred and six cannons, from twenty-four to forty-six pounders, besides smaller ones planted on the bastions and curtains." (Samuel Ireland)
This meant that the great powder magazine upriver at Purfleet, the Woolwich Arsenal, all the shipping at the great Port of London and London itself were well defended.
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