Free hard hat tours around the historic casemates and corridors of the iconic seafront Redoubt Fortress attraction take place this weekend.
Opening for weekends only throughout 2019, the fortress is undergoing both investigatory and restoration work, revealing some newly opened casemates and caponiers for the first time in decades.
From a former 1890’s Bath House to the Victorian latrines, guided hard hat tours led by knowledgeable guides also tell the stories of some of the former solders, inmates and residents, some of which are the result of a recent research project.
Eastbourne council’s tourism boss Margaret Bannister said, “It will be fascinating to see behind the scenes of this impressive fortress, even revealing some areas that have never before been accessible to the general public. We hope to reveal even more as time goes on throughout this important restoration project.”
Despite the works, a busy events programme will march on seeing the fortress come alive with drills and battle re-enactments on May 18 and 19 and August 3 and 4, as the Cameron Highlanders arrive in town.
Culture and Cake brings its monthly slice of social history, from the story of Eastbourne’s ground-breaking illusionist George Grimmond, in How’s Tricks? to A Century of Secrets, featuring tales of the plague, piracy and pies.
Films at the Fortress returns from April 27 with monthly themed film screenings ranging from cult classic Withnail & I to 80s Brat Pack favourite The Breakfast Club.
The events season comes to a close on October 25-27 with spooky twilight ghost tours and The Amityville Horror film screening at Halloween.
The Redoubt restoration works will continue throughout 2019, sustaining the building for future generations, bringing essential improvements to accessibility and increasing the capacity for holding bigger events in future. The project will also enable the 1807 building to become more energy efficient, reducing the carbon footprint and running costs.
The Redoubt Fortress and Outpost Café opens every Saturday and Sunday from March 23 to November 3 from 10am-5pm. Entry is free with guided hard hat tours at 10am, 12pm and 2pm.
For more information visit www.HeritageEastbourne.co.uk or telephone 410300.