The Fort of Stabroek dates from 1902. It is one of a ring of forts surrounding Antwerp, built after the city had been identified as Belgium's National redoubt to which the army and government could retreat and await allied intervention in the event of military attack from abroad. It is constructed of reinforced concrete with a trapezoidal footprint, and surrounded by a moat, which here forms a part of the Antitank canal constructed between 1937 and 1939. Together with the Fort of Sint-Katelijne-Waver the Fort of Stabroek was one of the first two "armoured forts" in Antwerp, intended to withstand shells of up to 22 cm.
Construction, mandated in 1900, progressed only with delays, starting in 1902. The fort was completed in 1907 or 1908. However, it never received the heavy artillery pieces which had been intended for it, and by the time war did break out, in 1914, attack came not from France but from Germany, and the Germans were using artillery shells of 30.5 cm or, in the case of the so-called Big Bertha guns, of 42 cm.
Copyright: CC 3.0