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Southsea Castle

Clarence Esplanade

Southsea Castle was built by Henry VIII between 1544 and 1545 to protect Portsmouth against possible French invasion.

Its revolutionary design provided for the most efficient use of guns in attack or defence now that artillery dominated warfare. In the early 19th century, the castle was substantially altered to accommodate extra guns and a larger garrison of 200 men.

The most significant addition of this period was an underground tunnel around the moat, which you can still enter. The castle was only withdrawn from active service in 1960.

Wheelchair access to courtyard and ground floor galleries only.

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Map of Southsea Castle


By Road: M27/M275 into Portsmouth, follow Seafront symbol then Southsea Castle on Brown signposts. Or A3(M), A27, A2030 follow Seafront symbol then Southsea Castle on Brown signposts.

By Rail: Portsmouth Harbour Station. Number 6 bus to Palmerston Road (shopping area) then 7 minute walk.

Southsea Castle Postcode for SatNav: PO5 3PA


+44 (0)23 9282 7261
+44 (0)23 9287 6550 (Minicom)
+44 (0)23 9287 5276

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