Subscribe      List an Event or Business      Invite a Writer      Write for WN      Writers      Other Locations      HubGarden      Recipes

Fort Glanville Conservation Park & Reenactment

Home > Adelaide > School Holidays | Kids | Fun Things To Do | Fun for Children | Family
by Dave Walsh (subscribe)
I enjoy writing about Adelaide and its many attractions. If you think Adelaide is boring, the problem is not with Adelaide. adelaideunearthed.blogspot.com.au/
Published February 24th 2013
Where history comes alive
fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Drill Parade in Front of Sixty Four Pounder Cannon


Fort Glanville is a coastal fort built to defend South Australia from invasion in the 19th century.

Rumours were flying about Adelaide in those days that the Russians were coming, and coastal forts were considered a necessity.

Situated in a conservation park on the sea front just south of Semaphore, the fort has been carefully restored to its former glory by volunteers from the Fort Glanville Historical Association.

The fort buildings, artillery, and environment have been historically re-created, and it is open to the public for tours and function bookings.

But far from being a boring static display of times gone by, the fort comes alive every month with reenactments of the activities that were once part of daily life here.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Part of the Visitor Centre


Visitors to the fort are rewarded with authentic drill parades, firing of cannons, and kids love the opportunity to participate in the activities. It's all quite interactive, and volunteers are eager to make sure that visitors make the most of their stay.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Children On Parade


After passing through the shop and Visitor Centre full of historical displays and information, the visitor walks along the old road originally used to enter the fort.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Inside the Defence Walls of Fort Glanville


You can either take a guided tour or wander around the displays at your own speed.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Soldiers' Mess (Kitchen)


The displays have a range of themes including life in the barracks, where the soldiers were accommodated underground.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Sleeping Quarters in Fort Glanville


Living conditions were quite confined in those days, with the garrison sleeping in one room.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Magazine for Ammunition, Loading Gallery & Cannon


The fort magazine (where ammunition was stored) was located below ground level for safety reasons.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Inside the Magazine


fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Ammunition in The Magazine


From there ammunition was carried up one level by hoist to the Loading Gallery. This is probably also the method that was used at Fort Largs, which was built only a few years later.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Ten Inch Gun Loader


The loader for the 10" cannon allowed loading to be carried out more safely within the loading gallery - the gun barrel was rotated and lowered to allow muzzle loading.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Gun Barrel Lowered for Loading


Once loading was complete, the gun barrel was raised, rotated, and the gun fired.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Inside the Caponier at Fort Glanville


Fort Glanville also features a caponier, a tunnel leading out into the sand hills which allows forward defence of the fort from concealed positions underground.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Firing a Volley


fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Drill on the Manning Parade


Throughout the afternoon, the energetic volunteers from the Fort Glanville Historical Society continue performing drills and demonstrating the cannons.

I cannot understate the devotion to duty of the volunteers. On the day that I visited it was more than 40 degrees in the sun, and they were seemingly tireless as they marched around in full dress uniform.

To be honest I felt heat exhausted watching them perform while I was in the shade. Aged between 16-90, these volunteers are truly Heroes of the Empire.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
A Detail Marches to the Cannon


Towards the end of the afternoon came the piece de resistance, the firing of the 64 pounder cannon.

fort glanville, what's on in adelaide, about adelaide, semaphore, coastal fort, reenactments, conservation park
Preparing the Sixty Four Pounder


With brisk precision the soldiers prepared and fired the cannon. After two false fires the atmosphere was electric, but we were rewarded with a thunderclap and enough smoke to do a steam engine proud.



Visiting here is highly recommended, no matter what's on in Adelaide. The volunteers are so keen that it is infectious, and the entry costs are very modest.

If you're visiting the Semaphore Markets, or just admiring the local buildings in Semaphore, Fort Glanville is just down the road and deserves to be seen.

Unfortunately it is not possible to see its sister fort, Fort Largs as it is not open to the public. However you can see a detailed article with photos here.

The author received free admission to Fort Glanville to assist with research into Fort Largs.
Help us improve  Click here if you liked this article  110
Share: email  facebook  twitter
Why? History comes alive
When: Opening times: Every third calendar sunday from September to May - 1pm to 4.30pm
Phone: 0413 469344
Where: 359 Military Rd, Semaphore Park SA, 5018
Cost: Family $20.00, Adults $8.00, Concession/Children $5.00
Your Comment
What an interesting place to spend the afternoon, maybe not in the heat you went in but certainly a place I would be keen to visit come the cooler months.
by Yin-Yin Ow (score: 3|1569) 579 days ago
Articles from other cities
Popular Articles
Categories
Lists
Questions