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TP3238 - Fort Southwick
[UK map]
Grid reference :
Type :
Condition :
Good Good condition
Flush Bracket :
OSGB36 Station :
Current use :
Historic use :
T:UK waypoint :
County :
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OSGB36 trig archive spreadsheet - IW
Fort SouthwickSU31/18SU31S018462736.90106949.33131.1882PILLAR01/06/1942101/07/1957N0

Nearby trigpointsplacenames 

There are 23 photos for this trigpoint (view album).

This trigpoint:
Is ranked joint 6394th with 111 other trigs (more).
Has a mean score of 5.41/10 (from 29 logged visits)
Was First logged: 28th Apr 2003
Was Last found intact: 13th Jun 2017
Was Last logged: 17th Nov 2021

Of the 29 logged visits,
2 recorded a location and of these....

All were within 10m
The average error was 5m
1 was exact

Chalk Pit Chalk Pit Wicor Farm School Tower Wicor Farm School Tower Fort Nelson Fort Nelson Nelsons Monument Nelsons Monument Fareham Fareham Portchester Castle Portchester Castle Horsea Island I R H Flagstaff Horsea Island I R H Flagstaff Horsea Island Quarter Deck Flagstaff Horsea Island Quarter Deck Flagstaff Portsdown Hill West Portsdown Hill West Portsdown Hill East Portsdown Hill East Horsea Island Tip Horsea Island Tip Wymering Wymering Pigeon Block Pigeon Block Mickandkim Mickandkim jonglew jonglew Fort Southwick Fort Southwick [Zoom In/Out] [Hide Labels]

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Selection of photos for this Pillar.

The view from the car park!
By widget
Trig Point
Flush Bracket
FB 2455, top half
By peregrinus

By asbown
See 16 more in the album.

Logged Visits:

Unreachable but visible 17th Nov 2021  19:19  by Johnbest

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

Not Logged 5th Feb 2021  04:20  by Christiene

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Not Logged  Score: 5/10

Inaccessible 16th Sep 2020  15:00  by AHD

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 2/10

Parked by car sales as lay-by has been blocked off and walked along footpath and into reservoir compound hoping to get a photo. Bushes have grown up and could not see the Pillar, may have to wait until Winter to try my luck.

Inaccessible 1st Sep 2020  11:50  by bwm

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 5/10

Unreachable but visible 4th Dec 2018  13:40  by Nekyram

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

Walked up steps into Fort to top of N H S car park where we were challenged and asked to leave, not seeing the trig. As it was showing on the map next to mast we then drove on down the road to layby where we took the footpath into field ,under fence to a covered reservoir. Trig could be seen easily from standing on top of reservoir.

View from reservoir©Nekyram

Inaccessible 9th Aug 2018  18:15  by weekender

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 5/10

Inaccessible 21st Jun 2018  15:00  by widget

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 1/10

I tried via the SW entrance/park & ride site and was advised that it was "all MOD" and they wouldn't let me in. I didn't bother trying any harder. These forts are reminiscent of Plymouth's, which also have trigs!

The view from the car park!

Good condition 13th Jun 2017  11:41  by G1ANQ

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Good  Score: 5/10

As there was electric fencing around this trig, I didnt attempt to hop over it to get to the trig but i could see it very clearly. Good views over Portsmouth.

Trig Point

Inaccessible 12th Feb 2017  00:00  by caroleengel

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 5/10

Despite the OK from the NHS, the company managing the car park ignored my emails requesting access. I entered via the used car sales business to the west. I then walked across the empty car park in the direction of the trig but was spotted by the security guard who first of all set his dog on me (OK as I like dogs) and puffed and panted up to me to march me off the premises. No amount of pleading had any effect whatsoever. If you get in, keep close to all buildings and go on a busy day (certainly not Sunday) and you might make it. Good luck.

Good condition 7th Sep 2016  11:00  by dugswell2

FB Number: S2650  Condition: Good  Score: 10/10

Ticked the legal way plus llama welfare check.

Good condition 4th Jun 2015  13:44  by jonglew

Gridref: SU 62747 06950   FB Number: S2650  Condition: Good  Score: 6/10

Site has been colonized by the NHS, they have a modern large footprint, single-storey building within the fort which houses their IT systems, and it's a park and ride for NHS staff working in Portsmouth. Security is lax but efficient - by that I mean I parked up at the front of the building (no security at all), walked into the fort and up onto the western ramparts without being challenged or in fact seeing anyone despite there being a lot of cars there, to where the trig is located. But was eventually spotted on cctv and escorted off the premises. Pillar was found in excellent condition centrally mounted on a large square plinth; original cap in place, lightly indented lettering; front sight hole open, did not check the others. Extensive and excellent views.

Pillar TP3238©jonglew
Spider TP3238©jonglew
Flush Bracket TP3238©jonglew

Good condition 24th May 2015  16:45  by mattandsophie

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Good  Score: 6/10

Within Fort Southwick site so inaccessible. Finally got a view as I walked north down the hill towards Southwick

Good condition 20th May 2015  13:45  by Wubbleyew

FB Number: S2650  Condition: Good  Score: 7/10

This is one of Palmerston's forts from the 1850's. I've tried unsuccessfully a few times over the years to visit this trig, but always met with troublesome security men. Today was surprisingly easy: I simply walked in (no security staff around), passed through the NHS park and ride car-park (felt quite at ease - well I did work for the NHS for over 30 years). The pillar sits on the other side of an apparent electric fence (electricity not on today), and really what need is there for an electric fence anyway? Felt a little conspicuous stood next to the pillar (which is in good condition with cap in place & all four sight-holes open) in view of nearby office windows, but boldness often pays off. So fellow trigpointers, perhaps now is the time to visit this previously difficult-to- access pillar.

Inaccessible 28th Mar 2015  14:28  by CJO

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 5/10

Arrived just as they were locking the gates to the NHS car park. Annoying.

Fort Southwick

Good condition 1st Nov 2012  12:50  by hotbox16

FB Number: S2650  Condition: Good  Score: 8/10

Work nearby and bagged during lunch. Parked at NHS park and ride and walked up steps next to bus stop straight up into the fort. No security. got right up to trig and saw was in good condition, but trig and surrounding area encircled by an electric fence which i was not going to try and scale!!

Unreachable but visible 11th Jul 2011  09:15  by Mickandkim

Gridref: SU 62737 06949   FB Number: S2650  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 4/10

Refused access by security

Unreachable but visible 26th Nov 2010  13:55  by bluebeard

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

Good condition 20th Apr 2010  10:06  by peregrinus

FB Number: S2650  Condition: Good  Score: 8/10

vgc, metal cap, shallow letters. Had more or less given up on this one until I noticed asbown had wandered in and bagged it. So I did the same. One or two car drivers around; the burger van man; no-one else. Went in via the pedestrian entrance next to the bus stop. Shame its just a car park but impressive structure nevertheless. Flush bracket 2455 is fixed to the outside wall - half buried in surfacing. I had a Purbrook visit arranged for the morning and a Bembridge tour booked for the afternoon, so called here between.

Trig, looking W
Trig, looking E
Trig, looking S
Trig, looking N
Trig, looking SW
FB 2455, top half fixed to S face of outre wall, about halfway along

Good condition 19th Nov 2009  10:55  by asbown

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Good  Score: 8/10

Parked in the entrance to the resr and 1st bagged the portsmouth ua top,walked down the road to the main entrance and thought I would just try my luck and walk straight in, expected to be stopped by security but nobody about so walked up the slope still expecting to be stopped at anytime,the area at the top is now a NHS site and also used for a NHS park and ride, once this far the only thing to separate me from the dozen's of other people in the area was that I was strolling around with a gps in my hands, the trig is across the car park from the slope past the burger van, once there and having got some photo;s in case of being seen I took my chances and climbed the slope straight to the trig, great views from the trig itself,took the steps for the park and ride on the way back and straight out back on to the main road.

Unreachable but visible 6th May 2009  12:00  by peregrinus

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

Ive seen this from outside a couple of times; need to check dates. As of 6 May 09, trig isnt shown on OS getamap at 25 or 50k scale. Ominous...

Unreachable but visible 27th Aug 2007  14:00  by martinc

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 6/10

Good views both sides of Portsdown Hill. Visible but the closest I could get was on the reservoir to the west.

Unreachable but visible 10th Aug 2006  20:10  by RoPeHe

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

Inside defences of Fort Southwick. Viewed only from 100m away, but looks in good condition. Good views over Portsmouth Harbour and the Isle of Wight.

Unreachable but visible 14th May 2006  15:40  by Trigger

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

Up the footpath just to the west, slip through the fence and a good view can be had from the top of the reservoir!

Not Logged 3rd Jun 2005  00:00  by Barbara Jones

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Not Logged  Score: 10/10

On my first visit in Oct 2004 pleasant chap at security gate regretted that he could not let me in but put me through by phone to site manager. I gathered the Fort was being converted to luxury appartments and that additional luxury housing was being built in the grounds. Site manager assured me trig was being looked after. He was very sorry but Health and Safety precluded me being allowed in. Ring again in the future and he would escort me in. So as I going that way on 3/6/2005 I rang him again but only on the morning of my visit. Once more great regret but gas main was being connected, contrators, Heath and Safety etc etc. We drove up there anyway and found additional, tall security fencing round the grass areas outside the Fort and a new security barrier barring access to the security office. I ducked under the barrier and found no one in the office. Meanwhile David had discovered an entry phone on the barrier. We pressed buttons for Security Gate and then Site Office but only got beep, beeps. I left David 'parked' at the barrier and walked boldly up the road through the main gate and into large open area up the top. There I found old guns and military vehciles lying about; a couple of dumper trucks roaming around; an office for Candy King, sweet makers/ distributors; a larger NHS office with lots of cars parked (both these office buildings looked post WW2 ex military buildings); a snack bar parked in a corner and up on the ramparts there was the trig point. Absolutely no sign of any housing development or gas main installation. I marched across mown grass heading for a gate in chestnut paling fence. A grubby 'yoof' with braces on his teeth detatched himself from the snack bar and came my way. He clearly wanted to speak to me so I went to meet him. 'What are you doing here? Who are you with? My uncle owns this site. No, you can't go up there. (I was only 50yds from the trig damn it!) Because the NHS (yes, National Health Service) are here and its a high security site.' He allowed me to take a photo from where we were but was very agitated about what other photos I might have taken. None as it happens. I retreated and found David now parked by the security office inside the barrier. A queue of cars had built up behind him. One of the drivers had opened the barrier with a swipe card and David had driven in with the flow of cars. Still no one about down here so we ate our picnic in the car looking out over sunny Portsmouth Harbour. We began to wonder if the barrier would open automatically to let us out. A workman type in shorts T-shirt appeared with a mobile phone. He seemed to be the 'security' man. He was polite but very firm and eventually got a bit stroppy when I asked what the problem was and why everyone was so determined to keep me out. He trotted out the usual Get Of My Land stuff. Private property, what if everyone wanted to come in, would we like our gardens invaded and the catch all Health and Safety line. We were let out! The trig looked in good nick and in no obvious danger. I could see the fb but wasn't close enough to read it. I guess the next move is to phone the site manager who doesn't seem to be on site, and see if I can arrange an appointment with him to view the trig at close hand. That probably want be until the autumn. Meanwhile I do wonder why they are all so paranoid! I've given it 10 out of 10 for interest because of the security situation.

Unreachable but visible 20th May 2005  09:15  by rhayader_wanderer

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

No luck on access may try again in the future

Unreachable but visible 14th May 2005  15:00  by

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Unreachable but visible  Score: 5/10

done whilst county top bagging (Portsmouth) within the fence around fort southwick - for the full story please visit -

Fort Southwick Trig ©

Good condition 8th Jan 2005  12:00  by barryhunter

FB Number: S2650  Condition: Good  Score: 6/10

I havent visited this trigpoint, just posting these pictures sent in by Bob Hunt,

FB (by Bob Hunt)
Trigpoint (by Bob Hunt)

Not Logged 19th Nov 2004  12:00  by iainmac

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Not Logged  Score: 0/10

A real miserable jobsworth on security here - its now used as a storage site for a private company. His cctv showed me parking in visitors spot and walking up to his portakabin but he still managed to ignore me. I made a note of the telephone number up on the gate - 07831 418488; a call may get you in.

Inaccessible 28th Apr 2003  13:59  by Sapper

FB Number: Not logged  Condition: Inaccessible  Score: 5/10

Inside a defence research establishment on top of a Victorian fort. I will try and gain access sometime in the future!

Existing but unreachable!

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