Abandoned Fort Rocky


Off the quiet road on the way down to Port Royal, we took a little detour to follow an unexpected sign.  “To Fort Rocky”, it said.  I had read a little about a few other old forts in the area and was expecting the ruins of old stone walls, but was surprised to see an abandoned compound that was quite modern. The fort’s dusty courtyard was surrounded with crumbling and roofless concrete structures.  Rusting rebar poked out around windows and door frames.  My eye lead straight to the graffiti-sprayed walls and signs of vagrant inhabitation.  Cacti sprouted in incongruous spaces.   What was it?  And why was it abandoned?  I had no idea and there were no other clues.  The sun was fierce and there was little shade, but  I had to take a few pictures:

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Peeking inside one of the ground floor rooms

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I presume this is the Fort’s look out tower, complete with dead palm tree stump.

Fort Rocky Beach

A few yards outside the Fort is Rocky Beach. Sadly its covered in trash, although the beach and sea looked like it had potential to be a pleasant spot to visit if it were clean. The passing container ship just made it all look lonelier.

A little research online when we returned home revealed that Fort Rocky was built just before the first world war.  Fort Rocky became a major coastal guns defense, replacing the Victoria Battery at Fort Charles that was damaged in the 1907 earthquake.  The fort regularly housed more than 80 officers before it was closed after the end of the second world war.   I wish I had known during our visit that the area also had a steam railway that ran down the Palisadoes pennisula, near to Fort Rocky, all the way down to Port Royal.  Prior to 1936 there was no driveable road and the railway provided a way to transport important supplies.   There are still remnants of the old railway bridge to be spotted today, but I didn’t know to look.  Interesting piece of abandoned history.

 

 

3 thoughts on “Abandoned Fort Rocky

  1. Yes. It’s a shame, how many historical places seems to be abandoned or neglected in Jamaica. I think it has to do with the way, Jamaica was treated during the colonization. Who was interested to preserve the island as a paradise? The Colonial lords sucked the island out and thrown the indigenous people. The slaves, which brought to Jamaica against there own will had only to work, to form themselves was forbidden. There lifes was hard and to short. Why they should think about such things like preserving and sustainability? Slavery was abolished only 200 years ago, Jamaica is not yet an independent nation for so long. The procurement and distribution of financial resources is not easy. Corruption and embezzlement is still the order of the day.
    Given the many things that must be done on Jamaica (first of all the restoration of the infrastructure), it probably takes a lot of patience until the restoration of abandoned or neglected historical places.

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