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Clyde Defences, Portkil Battery, 4.7-inch Gun Emplacements

Gun Emplacement(S) (First World War), Gun Emplacement(S) (20th Century)

Site Name Clyde Defences, Portkil Battery, 4.7-inch Gun Emplacements

Classification Gun Emplacement(S) (First World War), Gun Emplacement(S) (20th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Fort Road

Canmore ID 239746

Site Number NS28SE 39.02

NGR NS 25068 80469

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Rosneath
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Dumbarton
  • Former County Dunbartonshire

World War One Audit of Surviving Remains (5 July 2013)

The 4.7 QF (Quick Firing) gun emplacements and their magazine below are as described. Drawings on War Office file (The National Archives WO 78/ 5184) show the plan of the battery and arrangement of rooms in the underground part. The rooms directly between and below the battery where the shell store and cartridge store, a shelter for 8 men and the R.A. store. Opposite and across the passageway is a larger crew shelter for 27 men. At either end of the passageway are two small stores, a lamp store and a small arms stores.

Information from HS/RCAHMS World War One Audit Project (GJB) and RCAHMS (AKK) 5 July 2013.

Archaeology Notes

NS28SW 26.01 24986 80501

What may be one of the magazines for the WW I Portkil Battery situated about 90m SE of the gun emplacements (NS28SE 26.00) is visible on postwar vertical air photographs (CPE/Scot/ 350, 5210-5211, flown 17 April 1948).

Information from RCAHMS (DE), March 2003


Project (March 2013 - September 2013)

A project to characterise the quantity and quality of the Scottish resource of known surviving remains of the First World War. Carried out in partnership between Historic Scotland and RCAHMS.

Field Visit (18 May 2016)

The two 4.7-inch gun emplacements at Portkil stand on the same terrace as the 6-inch guns (NS28SE 39.01) but 135m to the ESE. The emplacements stand some 20m apart on a raised platform above Fort Road, immediately to the NNE, with ready ammunition lockers below and in the NNE face of the low wall that extends ESE from the rear of the ESE emplacement. Each emplacement has a concrete glacis to the front (SSW), with the holdfast ring only visible in that on the ESE. Modern metal stairs have replaced the original set leading down to the painted brick-walled courtyard from which entry could be gained to the former magazine, crew shelter, lamp- and store-rooms. These have been converted and are now in use as holiday/weekend homes. Original features that remain include metal fencing, a davit, ventilation pipes and chimneys.

Visited by HES Survey and Recording (AM, AKK) 18 May 2016.


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