The Palmerston Fort is constructed of Granite and Limestone. It was built in 1870 on the orders of The Royal commission by Mr George Thomas of Orielton Terrace Pembroke. The fort contained six casemates to hold RML 7-inch guns and three gun platforms to hold RML 9 inch 12 ton guns. The fort is approached over a drawbridge that is protected by two flanking Caponiers
The fort, which is just offshore from Tenby Castle, was built on St Catherine's Island which was purchased from The Corporation of Tenby for £800 in 1866. In 1867 work began clearing the site and constructing the slopes and cranes for the mammoth task of lifting solid granite blocks onto the island. The work was completed in 1870 but the guns and shields were not installed until 1886.
In 1907 the fort was decommissioned and sold to the Windsor Richards Family who converted it into a private house. During World War II the fort was compulsory purchased, the house contents were auctioned by Harrods and an anti-aircraft battery was built in front of the fort.
After the war the fort was again decommissioned and sold into private hands.
In 1968 the fort was opened as a zoo, and in 1979 the zoo relocated to new premises leaving it empty.
St Catherine's Fort is empty however work is underway to restore the fort and open it to the public.
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