Around 1875-1877, a battery was set up with two cannon at Rock-a-Nore. It is likely that this battery was utilised more for training purposes than any defensive measures, the cannon not appearing to be within any form of other defensive structures other than a picket-fence. It is suggested that they were utilised by The Cinque Ports Rifle Volunteers who constructed the Rock-a-Nore Drill Hall slightly to the west in circa 1896. The Parsons' Hastings, St Leonards & Neighbourhood Illustrated, 2nd edn, 1891 mentions that the location is where "they assemble for great gun practice. The Royal Naval Artillery Volunteers also hold their drills at the battery adjacent. This branch of our defensive forces was mainly organised by Lord Brassey K.C.R." The location was previously utilised for the Lifeboat House.
The Hastings Chronicle tells us that the Drill Hall was constructed for the 2nd Position Battery of the 2nd Cinque Ports Auxiliary Volunteers, opening on the 27th of February 1896. The battery originated at St. Leonards with the No. 3 Company, being sent to Hastings as a half-battery with no weapons. Two 48 pound cannon were lent to them, then a further two later on..
References & Notes
- ↑ Reporting of a storm in late 1876/early 1877 reveals that the battery was in place certainly by 1877
- ↑ The Artillery Battery at Rock-a-Nore, accessdate: 22 May 2020
- ↑ 1850-1899 – The Hastings Chronicle, accessdate: 22 May 2020