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VOC East Fort
Hout Bay district, Western Cape

Louis Michel THIBAULT: Architect



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34°03'20.86" S 18°21'53.19" E Alt: 62m

Situated along Chapman's Peak Drive the VOC East Fort was selected as one of the Top Ten endangered heritage sites in South Africa in 2016.

From The Heritage Portal:

East Fort Battery c.1782 is one of four coastal fortifications built and developed in Hout Bay during the period 1781 – 1806. Hout Bay was seen by the government of the day as the soft underbelly of Cape Town, exposing it to a possible marine invasion from the South. East Fort was established in 1782 and consists of a 6.4-hectare site which is today bisected by Chapman's Peak Drive, part of our country’s No 1 scenic route. However, little information regarding East Fort’s important role in our country’s history is provided near to or at the site and it remains an enigma to the many passing tourists. The site includes four ruined buildings (most of which could be restored) and a battery of 8 x 18 pdr guns which have been restored, proofed and licensed by the Hout Bay & Llandudno Heritage Association and have been ceremonially fired on many special occasions by the Association’s “Gunners”. Given its location the site has significant redevelopment potential as a heritage tourism destination.

Why this site is endangered

Little or no maintenance is currently done or protection given to the fabric of the site by the responsible authorities, walls are collapsing, it is subject to vandalism and exposed to fire damage, two major ones having occurred since SANParks took over the site.

Local champion

Hout Bay & Llandudno Heritage Association

For more information on the fort, see also The Heritage Portal, East Fort Hout Bay

See also VOC West Blockhouse and Battery.

Books that reference VOC East Fort

Alberts, Paul. 1992. South African military buildings photographed : an historical heritage. Cape Town: The Gallery Press. pg 100, 101 ill