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Tyne and Wear HER(870): South Shields, Trow Rock Floating Platform - Details

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S Tyneside

South Shields, Trow Rock Floating Platform

South Shields




Gun Emplacement

Early Modern


Extant Building

The site of Hiram Maxim's experimental 'floating platform', a cylinder, stood in water, which rose when gas was pumped in above the water, and fell when the gas was released. A standard naval gun was mounted on top of the cylinder and would be concealed while being loaded, and then rise out of the pit to fire. Constructed 1886-7 for the Inspector General of Fortifications for experimental trials, but proved to be too slow and was abandoned. In 1894 the machinery and ironwork was removed and the pit filled. Described as a concrete cylinder, with 21 feet internal diameter, and a western extension for approach tunnel. The Interior shows runners for a floating platform and entrance to the tunnel. A replica has been constructed. LISTED GRADE 2




<< HER 870 >> R. Hogg, 1984,The Tyne Turrets: Coastal Defence in the First World War, Fort, Vol 12, p 97-103 and Vol. 14 D.H. Clarke & A. Rudd, 1989, The Defences of Tyneside, Trow Rock, South Shields, Fortress Study Group Conference, pp. 7-8 D. Clarke & A. Rudd, The Trow Rock Floating Platform, p 55-60; English Heritage, 2008, Hadrian's Wall National Mapping Programme, 602135; Aerial Photographs RAF 58/B/32 5200 16-MAY-1948; Archaeological Research Services, 2010, Phase 2 North East Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment, Project Record Number 119; NECT, 2015, National Heritage at Risk Grade II Project

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