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Author Topic: Upnor Ordnance Depot  (Read 11065 times)

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Offline cliveh

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2016, 10:39:15 »
A few views around the Depot - now a building site!

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Offline kyn

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2012, 21:39:26 »
A couple of shots from the river  :)

Offline cliveh

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2012, 09:09:58 »
A few more photos of the Depot:








cliveh

Offline kyn

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2012, 17:38:55 »
We took a wander past earlier..

The second photo shows the proximity of Upnor Castle and the Depot.

Offline Leofwine

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2012, 23:23:33 »
Kentish Gazette - Tuesday 26 February 1861

CHATHAM.
In order to provide additional accommodation for the large stores of shot and shall which are being accumulated at Upnor Castle, opposite Chatham Dockyard, for the supply of the ships of war fitted out at Chatham and Sheerness, Government has decided on erecting a large building on the Crown lands adjoining the Castle to serve as a store for shell. The building is expected to cost nearly 4,000, of which sum 2,000 will be taken in this year's Estimates for the commencement of the work. A considerable sum will also be required for the purchase of the private property adjacent to the magazines at Upnor, in order to insure the better security of those buildings.
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Offline cliveh

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2011, 19:44:55 »
Plan from 1909:



cliveh

Sapper571

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2010, 14:27:58 »
From Medway to Monte Bello - the end of HMS Plym - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAlcMPti7EA
25Kilotons blast finished her forever. Contrary to popular belief, she was not 'vapourised' but sunk in 4-5 metres. She is till there. There are interesting stories of her final voyage here - http://www.worldnavalships.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3082 and here - http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/films/1951to1964/popup/transcript/trans_oper_hurr.htm

Offline bromptonboy

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2009, 11:11:14 »
As I have stated on another thread - I remember collecting cordite-filled rocket-boosters from the Upnor Ordnance Stores in the early 60s and was told that Britains first H.Bomb was stored there prior to the Christmas Island tests in '56.
That's really interesting about the H-Bomb. Especially as it is starting to emerge from local rumour, folklore and documented fact that a fair bit of work for the Christmas Island tests took place in Medway and just up the road in Woolwich. HMS Plym (which I think was the actual 'bomb ship') and other ships of the naval taskforce were fitted out for the tests at Chatham and Sheerness and the UKAEA had research labs at Gun Wharf Chatham and at Woolwich.

Sapper571

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2009, 19:11:22 »
As I have stated on another thread - I remember collecting cordite-filled rocket-boosters from the Upnor Ordnance Stores in the early 60s and was told that Britains first H.Bomb was stored there prior to the Christmas Island tests in the '50s.

Offline Trikeman

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Re: Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2009, 22:17:28 »
Aerial view of Upnor Depot, taken recently - love the writing on the wall, amazing it's survived
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Offline kyn

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Upnor Ordnance Depot
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2008, 23:39:52 »
There was an ordnance depot at Lower Upnor from the late 17th century until the late 20th century.  Owned by the Royal Engineers, the depot used to store and prepare munitions for the naval ships laid up on the River Medway at Chatham.  Situated opposite Chatham Dockyard the depot was an important part of the daily activity at the dockyard and due to its location it became the centre of a network of ordnance sites stretching far into the Hoo Peninsular with magazines at Chattenden and Lodge Hill.

Founded in 1668 at Upnor Castle it was not long until the castle was deemed too small to hold the ordnance alone and in the mid 18th century a temporary magazine was built to the south of the barracks, followed by a permanent magazine, A Magazine, being built between 1808 and 1810.  Built to withstand the contents of the magazine exploding it consisted of four chambers underneath brick cantenary vaults.  Between 1811 and the 1840's two examining rooms were built between the magazine and castle, these were to examine the ordnance before being stored.  Around each building on site was a traverse, this was a mound of earth that would take the explosion and shrapnel in case of an explosion.  The examining rooms were demolished in the later part of 20th century, whilst a new river wall and pier was built around this time.  The wall still exists with remains of original writing on that can be seen from Chatham, the pier was later demolished.  The magazines again proved to be insufficient and six old warships were converted and used as floating magazines.

With the development in the mid 19th century of shell firing guns the depot again had to b enlarged.  Between 1857 and 1862 shell stores were built and laboratories were also constructed to test the gunpowder and fill the shells.  B Magazine was constructed in 1857 to store gunpowder, the design being similar to A magazine.  B magazine still survives and closely resembles it's original design, No.2 shell store also still remains but has been adapted over the years.

Running up to the 20th century it was again realised the depot was too small, new magazines were built at Chattenden in 1877 and Lodge Hill in 1900 and 1903.  The magazines were connected to Upnor via a narrow gauge tramway, evidence of this remains.  the Upnor depot filled and stored explosive shells with more shell stores and ancillary structures being added to the site between 1882 and 1896, a new pier to the north was also added at this time.  Between 1903 and 1904 another shell store was built and a case store was added linking A and B magazines.  Three years later six shell filling rooms were constructed to the west of B Magazine, these have since been demolished.

A large shell filling laboratory was constructed between 1910 and 1912, this was when Upnor's main use was storage and the transfer of munitions to the ships.  Again more building works commenced on site with more explosive stores being added, B magazine was converted into a torpedo store and a pillbox and underground shelters were built during WWII.

The site was in use as an ordnance depot until 1964.  The MoD still occupy the site.

 

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