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I--- Fortifications
 I---   ** Pre WWII Coastal Defences **



Battery Point
Point Erskin
Ripapa Island
Oamaru 7" RML


A 7in-7Ton RML (Rifled Muzzle Loading) gun TS Cornwall, Sumner
Manufactured Royal Gun Factory, Mounted Halswell Battery (Wellington) 1885-89,
 Point Erskin 1891 - 1904


Battery Point Upper Battery (Middle Point)1890's Gun Emplacement
7in -7 Ton RML (Rifled Muzzle Loading) gun
The Gun emplacement. Latter used as the foundations of a house. The gun emplacement under the house, used as the house basement. The entrance to the Magazine & Powder room Looking back to the entrance, the powder room on the left
Interior of the powder room Entrance to the No2 Magazine The OP for the gun The cipher and msrkings on the 64lb RML at Oamaru
Status & Access:  Battery Point Defence area is owned by the Lyttelton Port Company and is not accessible to the public.

Drawing of the 7 inch RML Mounted at Pt Erskin & Battery Point

Point Erskin 1890's Gun Emplacement
7in-7 ton RML (Rifled Muzzle Loading) gun

The gun bay on whch the 7" RML  was installed 7in RML Gun being installed
Pt Erskin?
The gun magazine
(Demolished in the 1950's)
Pt Erskin Musketry Parapit Magazine Bay with the restored  magazine built in 1874 Magazine Bay c1900
7in-7 ton RML
(Rifled Muzzle Loading) Gun
Mk IV  No. 147 Manufactured RGF 1878

This gun was first installed at the Halswell Battery in Wellington 1885-89 and then at Pt Erskin 1885.

In service 1891-1904


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The 7" RML gun from Pt Erskin is now mounted at TA Cornwall in Redcliffs

Two 64lb RML Shells Schematics of the 64lb RML Shell
A 40mm Bofors Light Anti Aircraft gun of the type at Pt Erskin during WWII (no image)
Pt Erskin WWII Defences
 The terrace above the Pt Erskin Gun pit was the location on a 40mm Bofors light Anti Aircraft gun.
Established in 1939 it was known as the "Oil Wharf Gun"
Status & Access:  Point Erskin has Historic Places Trust status and is administered by the Department of Conservation and is open to the public. It is accessible from either Cressy road or from the yacht club.

Ripapa Island (Fort Jervois)
History of Ripapa island How to get there:  
Status & Access:   Ripapa Island  is administered by the Department of Conservation and is open to the public. It is accessible by Ferry from Lyttelton
Ripapa Island (Fort Jervois)  WWI and later 1914 - 1922
At the outbreak of war in 1914, Ripa (Ripapa) Island became Battery HQ for Lyttelton as well as the port examination battery. During this period it fired several 6lb shots across the bows of wayward fishing vessels. Ripa island is probably most well known for the internment of the German rraider Count Felix Von Luckner and his 2ic for 109 days. After WWI It also served for a time as a hospital for soldiers suffering from VD. It was abandoned as a coastal defence establishment around 1925.

Ripapa Island  WWII 1939 - 1946
Ripa island was used as a magazine during WWII and for a mine spotting roll. In 1941 one 6" BL gun (82 Hy Battery, 11th Heavy regemnt, NZA) was made serviceable to cover "dead" ground not covered by Godley Head and Battery Point guns. The 55 year old gun did not perform successfully and was considdered non operational by 1943. This gun did not have the examination roll in WWII as it had in WWI, this roll being carried out by the Battery Point guns.

64lb 7cwt RML (Rifled Muzzle Loading) gun No 703
Royal Gun Factory June 1878 Originally mounted Taiaroa (Howlett Battery) Dunedin 1885-1911
Status & Access:  In the park at the entrance to the walkway to the Cape Wanbrow gun emplacement. recovered from Gillies Foundry, Oamaru where it was used as the base for a crane for many years, hence the rod in barrel.



Further Reading:  Defending New Zealand, Ramparts on the Sea 1840-1950s Part 1, Pages 86-90, Peter Cooke, Defence of New Zealand Study Group ISBN 0-473-06833-0

Fortress Canterbury South Island Defence 1890's - WWII
Coastal Defence Anti Aircraft Defence Anti Invasion  Plans NZ Military History ...
Navy Defence Installations
Airforce Defence Installations

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Last modified: 01/10/12.