Front Street, Pembroke Dock

£70,000

Guide price

WITHDRAWN FROM AUCTION On Clients Instructions. Now being sold by Private Treaty Format. A very rare opportunity to purchase a part of history. John Francis are pleased to offer for sale this offshore Trefoil-plan Gun Tower built in 1851. The North East Dockyard Tower was originally built to accommodate officers and men with storage for powder and provisions. The roof had guns mounted on traversing platforms and 12-pound brass howitzers in order to defend the Royal Dockyard of Pembroke Dock. The building is three stories in height and as you would expect solid in construction, however, it requires maintenance. Being offshore, the tower offers sweeping views of the Cleddau River, Pembroke Dock, Neyland and Llanstadwell. This truly is an unique opportunity to purchase a part of history.

History

Work commenced in 1848 to construct the Gun Tower and was completed in 1851, it is three stories in height and was designed to be operated by one officer and 33 men. Approximately 13m high, the walls are substantial and at the thickest parts 9ft (2.7metres) reducing to 5ft (1.5 metres).

Although the tower was manned in the mid 19th Century by the Military/Naval forces, it never fired a shot in anger in the defence of The Royal Dockyard and was eventually disarmed in 1882.

It is understood by the Pembroke Museum Trust that Artillery Men from the Royal Dockyard Corps, Pembroke Dock Battalion would have occupied the tower when first constructed and it is also known by the Trust that the Royal Artillery Militia were on Summertime Training at some point prior to 1861. Later, members of the Pembrokeshire Artillery Volunteers would have provided the manpower with some involvement of members of the regular Royal Artillery.

The 1861 Census lists a Royal Artillery Gunner, his wife and four children plus a tower keeper, wife and six children. Around the time the Tower would have been disarmed (1882), the 1881 Census lists a Coast Brigade Bombardier, his wife and three young children along with a Coast Brigade Gunner and his wife. Later, the Tower became the base of the 3rd fleet between 1913 1914.

Although disarmed of its original military fire power, The Tower continued to serve as a Military fortress both throughout World War I and World War II. In World War I, it became an observation post and later during World War II, it was manned by members of the RAF Regiment and used as a machine gun position hosting 3 twin lewis guns in brick compounds.

Following use as a store, South Pembrokeshire District Council acquired the Tower in 1975. The building was the subject of an extensive refurbishment in 1994/1995 and became The Gun Tower Museum operated by The Pembroke Dock Museum Trust until 2017.

Access Foot Bridge

Access to the Tower is via a substantial walkway to 1st floor or accommodation level. This is constructed on land belonging to the Crown Estate and the sale would be subject to a Lease of Easement with the Crown Estate for 150 years in return for an annual peppercorn rent. The new owner of the Tower will be fully responsible for the repair and maintenance of the walkway.

Accommodation Level

Octagonal central pillars supporting large ceiling timbers.

Access Hall

Internal access to all floors is via iron spiral staircase. Four windows to the south aspect.

Main Men Room

Three windows with north facing outlook.

Officers Room

Two windows with westerly outlook.

Kitchen Area

One window with north westerly outlook.

Ablution / Water Pump Room

Window opening with northernly outlook.

Cooking Room

Window opening with northernly outlook.

Second Men Room

Three windows with easterly outlook.

WC

Window opening with southerly outlook. Low level WC.

Washroom

Window opening with southerly outlook. Sink and water heater.

Roof

Accessed via iron spiral staircase.

Lobby

Open Level For Gun Tracks

The roof level was used as a floor and housed 3 x 32lb guns that would traverse on iron circular platforms.

To the front elevation, 12 musket positions were established for further defence on the main entrance to the Tower. Sweeping views of the Cleddau River, Pembroke Dock, Neyland and Llanstadwell.

Basement

The basement housed a water tank which could store 12500 gallons, storage areas and a magazine to store 198, 100lb barrels of gun powder. The basement is accessed via two spiral iron staircase.

Access Hall

Store Room

Magazine Room

Second Store Room

Construction

The Tower is well built from walls constructed in brick and grey limestone ashlar facing with granite details. Trefoil plan with flat front to landward, curved ends and curved seaward side. Battered walls to heavy bull-nose moulding under high coped parapet. South side has centre parabolic arched recess breaking cornice with rusticated voussoirs. Six small musketry loops in parapet over. Within arch is granite rusticated doorway dated VR 1851 with two loops each side and iron hoist to left. To left and right of arch there is a single loop and then curved ends each with three camber-headed ashlar framed windows with smaller square openings.

Listing

Grade II* Listed, Cadw Reference: 14354

Scheduled Ancient Monument, Reference: PE334

The Tower is listed due to it being:

An important example of Victorian Military Engineering' and for its Group Value with other structures at Pembroke Dockyard' (British Listed Buildings)

Transport Links

Pembroke Dock is connected by several bus services linking to Haverfordwest, Milford Haven and Tenby. Pembroke Dock also has a railway station. Irish Ferries operate a ferry service from Pembroke Dock to Rosslare in Southern Ireland. The ferry runs twice a day in the early afternoon and the early hours of the morning.

Services

Mains electricity, mains water feed. Macerated foul waste disposal, No substantial drainage waste

Planning

Use is commercial. With regard to change of use, prospective purchasers will need to apply for Planning Permission with Listed Building Consent.

Rates

Ratable Value of the Tower is £5900.00.

Auction Date & Venue

For Sale by Public Auction at Parc Y Scarlets, Llanelli on Wednesday, 17th July 2019 at Parc Y Scarlets, Llanelli at 3pm (unless previously sold or withdrawn).

Solicitors

Legal Department

Pembrokeshire County Council

County Hall

Haverfordwest

Pembrokeshire

SA61 1TP

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John Francis - Pembroke

55 Main Street, Pembroke, SA71 4DA

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