The fort was built between 1808 and 1812 to prevent invaders gaining access from Maidstone Road to the River Medway. The work was composed of a long brick revetted dry ditch running between a fortified guardroom on the Rochester-Maidstone Road to a similar tower alongside the Medway. The principal work (still surviving) is a massive red brick keep, in the style of a medieval castle, which served as gun tower and observation post. In the sides of the tower were embrasures to sweep the ditch with fire. The dry ditch running across St Margaret's Street was crossed by drawbridge through a substantial casemated guardhouse in the form of an arch (which was demolished in the 1930s). From the tower ran a series of tunnels to the outlying guardhouses. Behind the dry ditch running from the tower down to Maidstone Road was a range of domestic building and barracks.
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