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Author Topic: Spur Battery Casemates, Dover Castle  (Read 10441 times)

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Offline cliveh

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Re: Spur Battery Casemates, Dover Castle
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2012, 12:45:26 »
These reports are fascinating kyn - thanks so much for posting them. I have seen mention of them in various places but it's great to see transcripts of the actual reports. The actions that followed publication of them did so much to improve the living conditions of the troops back then.


cliveh

Offline kyn

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Spur Battery Casemates, Dover Castle
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2012, 15:57:30 »
Report of 1858

Spur Battery.

The barrack accommodation in Spur Battery, consists of fifteen casemates, divided into two stories by a floor, and having windows only at one end so that there is no thorough ventilation.
The following is the accommodation provided by the Spur Battery casemates:-

Casemates.Number of Men by present regulation.Number of Men at 600 cubic feet each.Deficiency of accommodation in Men.
15245109136

It will be seen that there is a very considerable degree of overcrowding in the rooms.  Some of them give as little as 240 or 250 cubic feet per man, and the largest cubic space allotted in any of them, is no more than 314 cubic feet per man.  In their present condition they are dark, wretched, and hardly fit for occupation.
Those on the ground floor are occupied by married soldiers and their families.
Ventilation, so much wanted, could be provided by means of a shaft at the end farthest from the doors and windows, and by perforated glass panes and an Arnott’s ventilator, placed in each chimney.  These expedients would, however, be at the best, unsatisfactory.  It would be much better to remove the floor, which now divides the casemates into two flats, a measure which would give lofty and improved casemates, much more fit for human habitation than the present ones and the married quarters would have to be removed elsewhere.  If this was done the chimneys of the upper flats might be used as ventilating shafts.  Remodelled grates for warming the air should also be introduced.
The floors of the lower rooms are of stucco.  Proper wooden floors with ventilation underneath should be laid.
The privies belonging to these casemates are well constructed, they are flushed every day, and water stands in them; in the interval the water from the ablution rooms also runs into these privies.  The seats require to be divided by partitions, and each compartment should be furnished with a half door.  The urinals have water laid on.  There are no baths.  The guard room is gloomy, low, and unventilated.
We would recommend for these Barracks:-

1.   That the floors dividing the casemates be removed.
2.   That the numbers of men in each casemate be reduced, so that every man have 600 cubic feet of space.
3.   That each casemate be ventilated and warmed as described.
4.   That the guard room be ventilated and warmed in a similar manner.
5.   That the privies be furnished with divisions and half doors.
6.   That baths be provided.  Perhaps the best way of doing this would be to have one bathing establishment for the whole castle, with water laid on, and fixed baths in the proportion of one bath per 100 men.

 

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