Camden Fort Meagher is an example of a classical Coast Defence Artillery installation.
For almost 400 years, Camden Fort Meagher, played a key role as a strong strategic position for the defence of Ireland, the west coast of England and Wales. 65% of the fort is located underground in a labyrinth of tunnels and chambers.
Camden Fort Meagher is an Coast Defence Artillery fortification defending the mouth of Cork harbour together with Fort Mitchell (Spike Island), Fort Davis (Whitegate) and Fort Templebreedy.
Although constructed in the 16th century, the current fort dates from the 1860s.
The fort was one of only 8 installations worldwide to house the world’s first guided missile “The Brennan Torpedo”.
Originally named Fort Camden, it was handed over to the Defence Forces in 1938 along with other Treaty Ports, such as Fort Dunree. Remamed Fort Meagher, it remained as a military installation until it was handed over to Cork County Council in 1989.
Extensive restoration work is continuing with financial and logistical support provided by Cork County Council and other stakeholders. The renovation benefits from the support of Employment schemes from the Department of Social Protection and the commitment of over 45 dedicated volunteers and staff.
Currently, the fort contains a number of exhibition rooms such as: the Irish Story, the English Story, Ground Zero 360, Naval Exhibition, WW1 Exhibition, Rescue Camden Story, and the Gunners Room.
The underground tunnels were used to access munitions storage areas and used for safe passage for the defending personnel. Currently, 20% approx of the tunnels are accessible to the public. The vaulted ceiling magazine, set deep underground, was used to store munitions and gunpowder.
The fort is a prime location to watch ships passing through Cork Harbour, the second largest natural harbour in the world.