On the waterfront – almost

I just couldn’t get to the docks. It was an after dinner visit, on a single decker bus this time, but the terminals are far from the roadways behind manned gates and multi-storied car parks. Disappointed. Anyway there were no ships in. They always arrive after dark.

But the ancient the city walls were still there.

Below is ‘God’s House Tower’. The tower and the adjoining spur walls protected the sluice gates that controlled the water entering the town’s moat. They were built in the 15th century. The tower is a three-storied building with a stone turret stairway leading from the second floor to the battlements. (I am not entirely sure about the connection to God, but the tower was designed for use with artillery and was the headquarters of the Town Gunner, an important role in the 15th century. In the 18th century, the tower was used as a debtors’ prison.

During the 19th century, this was a spa town (wasn’t every town). A plaque on the building below commemorated the Austen family.

I guess you have to be a Jane Austen fan to make something of that. But wait, there is more.

The waterfront is the setting for many gentrified pubs.

Some of the newer buildings are also quite striking.

And the fortifications continue right into the city centre.

Below is the Bargate and Guildhall.

One comment

  1. Elsbeth

    This is so fascinating! Southampton, where so many members of families farewelled England. Just a name before, now just a bit more fleshed out history-wise. It looked as though it had been raining a little bit, true English summer. The journey so far has been hot and sunny. Wonderful, I’m loving it all.

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