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Fun at the Fort

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Monday 31 July — Sunday 3 September 2017

The Royal Armouries will present lots of activities to keep the family entertained at Fort Nelson over the summer holidays. Visitors will have the chance to find out about our amazing collections through ‘Who do you think we are’ which will bring handling collections from the Royal Armouries museum at Leeds to Fort Nelson. There will also be an opportunity to test skills on the junior assault course, witness the daily gun firings and participate in guided tours of the 19-acre site.

Back by popular demand, youngsters will be able to burn off some energy on this year’s challenging assault course which features new obstacles including hurdles, balance beams and a rope-bridge.

During August visitors can experience the power of artillery in action at Fort Nelson. Three different weapons from over 1000 years of history will be fired daily at 1 pm. Demonstrations will include a replica Ballista, a siege machine used by the Romans dating back to the 4th century; a late medieval wrought iron breech loader gun; and a British 25-pounder Howitzer used during the Second World War and by the Honorable Artillery Company to fire royal salutes at the Tower of London.

Jared Thornton, Visitor Services Officer said, ‘Fort Nelson is a fantastic day out for all the family. This year we are excited to offer ‘Who do you think we are’. Visitors will have the opportunity to handle items of the handling collection from Leeds museum which have not previously been on display at the fort and learn about the origins of the Royal Armouries’.

As well as the gun firings and assault course there are tunnels, ramparts and galleries to explore. Café 1871 is open daily, 10 am — 5 pm for tasty treats and refreshments, and the Kiosk on the parade serves a rage of delicious ice-creams.

Commemorating the 100th anniversary of Passchendaele

Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 July

To commemorate the battle of Passchendaele, uniformed detachments from Ubique Right of the Line will fire the 18-pounder on the parade at 11:30 am, 2 pm and 3 pm. This is in addition to the usual 1 pm daily firing of the 25-pounder Howitzer.
– Free to watch

Junior assault course

Monday 24 July — Sunday 3 September

Kids will get lots of fresh air and fun on the outdoor adventure course. No need to book, just drop in. Pay once and stay and play all day for £3.50 per child.

– Time: 10 am — 4 pm daily
– Suitable for 3-12 years.

Who do you think we are?

Monday 31 July — Sunday 3 September

New for this year is the opportunity for visitors to get their hands on some of the amazing objects in the handling collection from the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds. Activities will focus on the five themed galleries in the Leeds Museum; Origins of the Royal Armouries — Monday, Hunting — Tuesday, Self-Defense – Wednesday, Tournament — Thursday, War — Friday, Treasures — Saturday and Sunday.

– Daily children’s sessions at: 11 am and 2 pm
– Daily adult’s sessions: 12 noon and 3 pm
– Free to participate

Artillery in Action

Tuesday 1 August — Thursday 31 August

Daily 1 pm artillery in action display. Live firing the replica ballista, the wrought iron breech loader gun, and the British 25-pounder Howitzer on the parade.
– Free to watch

Guided Tours

For a real insight into the lives of the people who worked at Fort Nelson visitors can join one of the guided tours. These can be booked on the day. Tours take place daily at 11.15 am and 1.30 pm and tickets cost: £3.00 for adults/ under 16s go free.

Fort Nelson will be open 10 am — 5 pm over the summer holidays (26 July — 3 September).

Admission and parking are free.

For more details about the Royal Armouries and the national collection housed at Fort Nelson, visit

Ends —

Notes to editors
– Royal Armouries has two other sites at HM Tower of London and in Leeds.
– Fort Nelson in Hampshire houses the national collection of big guns and artillery. It underwent a major refurbishment in 2011, with new galleries and a state-of-the-art education centre. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
– In 2014, it was awarded a Certificate of Excellence by TripAdvisor.
– The Royal Armouries Museum should not be confused with Royal Armouries International plc, the private sector corporate hospitality business based on the same site in Leeds.
– For further media enquiries and photo opportunities at Fort Nelson, please contact Caroline Chapman (Communications Officer):

About the Royal Armouries

Entry to the museum is free but some activities carry a small charge.