Weymouth's Historic Sea Fort on the Jurassic Coast

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History of Nothe Fort

Post 1957


Coastal defence was abandoned in 1956 and as a consequence the fort was no longer required to protect the entrance to Portland Harbour. For the following 5 years the fort was used to house naval stores and degaussing equipment. By 1961 the navy had no further need of the fort and it was sold to Weymouth and Melcombe Regis Borough Council.

Under the ownership of the council the fort was left unoccupied and quickly became vandalised and started to fall into a state of dereliction. Various schemes were considered, including a luxury hotel complex, however nothing came of these schemes.

The fort was eventually saved from falling into state of total dereliction as a result of work undertaken under the Manpower Services Scheme and the efforts of interested individuals. The relentless dedication of the team of individuals and the assistance provided by the Weymouth Civic Society has resulted in the fort becoming one of the best preserved forts of its kind.

During the Cold War Period the fort was used as a nuclear shelter for civil administration. Approximately a third of the Magazine Level was converted into command and accommodation areas protected by heavy blast doors.

The fort is now maintained by Weymouth Civic Society under a lease agreement with Weymouth and Portland Borough Council and is open to the public.