MHG57016 - WWI dockyard accommodation blocks - Invergordon
An area of WWI dockyard accommodation blocks in Invergordon.
Type and Period (2)
- HUT (First World War - 1914 AD? to 1918 AD?)
- MILITARY CAMP (First World War - 1914 AD? to 1918 AD?)
- None recorded
The First World War map of the Invergordon Naval base (held in a private collection) shows an extensive area of accommodation for military personnel and for civilian contractors. Within the area are also a police station. Six substantial detached houses for the dockyard officers; these six houses survive (see MHG57048). The accommodation was in large timber H-shaped buildings numbered A-V and a similar sized Cleaners (sweepers) hut. A recreation hut, fire engine house, women's sick quarters, laundry, contractor's hut and coal yard serviced by a rail line. The site was levelled sometime after the war and much of the accommodation area was occupied by the Second World War by a broad band of earthen banks built round the tanks.
Recorded as part of HS and RCAHMS World War One Audit Project 2013. <1> <2> <3>
An area of WWI dockyard accommodation blocks in Invergordon.
The site was investigated in 2015 as part of the ARCH project 'Invergordon in World War I'. On a WWI Naval plan in private possession , 22 large H-shaped hutments are depicted, labelled A to V. Photographs of the time show one-storey timber buildings, and some photographs show the interiors. Blocks A to E are not shaded on the plan, where shading indicates Naval usage. However, the captions and position of the buildings suggests military usage, and the lack of shading is puzzling. On an Admiralty plan of 1921 (MPI 1/651/4) dating to 1921 , Blocks A to E are shaded to indicate military use. <4>
Labelled ‘Quarters for Men’: Block A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, J, K, L, M, O, P, R, S and T
Labelled ‘Quarters’: Block Q, U and V
Later the area of the hutments was used for tank farm extension or creation of berms around some of the tanks (on the west), or for housing and the distillery (on the east).
The site of A Block (at NGR 271043 868796) was landscaped for berms for Tanks 43 and 45, as well as a deep depression.
The site of B Block (at NGR 271160 868837) was landscaped to construct Tank 46 and nearby berms.
The site of C Block (at NGR 271149 868897) was landscaped for berms for Tank 44.
The site of D Block (at NGR 271120 868871) was landscaped for berms between Tanks 43 and 44.
The site of E Block (at NGR 271026 868828) was landscaped for berms for Tank 43, as well as a deep depression.
The site of F Block (at NGR 271222 868817) was landscaped to construct berms below Tank 46.
The site of G Block (at NGR 271250 868785) was landscaped to construct berms below Tank 46.
The site of H Block (at NGR 271285 868758) later had a number of WWII huts erected here, as well as a post-WWII Boiler House and Pump House.
The site of J Block (at NGR 271314 868728) later had a number of WWII huts erected here, as well as a large building with belfast roof (currently a garage).
The site of K Block (at NGR 271284 868845) later was relandscaped to create extensive berms below Tank 37.
The site of L Block (at NGR 271342 868891) later was relandscaped to create extensive berms below Tank 38.
The site of M Block (at NGR 271381 86891) later was relandscaped to create extensive berms below Tanks 39 and 40.
The site of N Block (at NGR 271429 868842) was later built on by Seabank Road, as well as several houses.
The site of O Block (at NGR 271478 869046) later was the site of a WWII camp, and then after WWII, the distillery.
The site of P Block (at NGR 271539 869102) later was the site of a WWII camp, and then after WWII, the distillery. A picture in a WWI photo album in the Historic Environment Scotland collection, and reproduced on Canmore (canmore.org.uk, no. DP 196245) shows the exterior of the hutment.
The site of Q Block (at NGR 271599 869156) later was the site of a WWII camp, and then after WWII, the distillery.
The site of R Block (at NGR 271510 868976) later was relandscaped to create extensive berms for the oil tanks
The site of S Block (at NGR 271536 869010) later was relandscaped to create extensive berms for the oil tanks.
The site of T Block (at NGR 271569 869069) later was the site of a WWII camp, and then after WWII, the distillery.
The site of U Block (at NGR 271630 869123) later was the site of a WWII camp, and then after WWII, the distillery.
The site of V Block (at NGR 271656 869094) later was the site of a WWII camp, and then after WWII, the distillery.
At least three versions of a WWI Naval plan survive, two in private collection which probably date to wartime, and one in the National Archives (MPI 1/641/4) which dates to 1921. On all three the buildings taken over or built by the Navy are shaded, but there are a few discrepancies between the plans. One of the plans in private collection has enlarged details, but only shows the Admiralty buildings and not others in the town. Valuation Rolls also indicate some buildings not shaded on our plans were taken over by the military. It is clear from contemporary photographs that the army built additional buildings, particularly north of Cromlet Drive. <5>
- <1> Text/Report/Fieldwork Report: Barclay, G.J.. 2014. The Built Heritage of the First World War in Scotland: The report of a project commissioned by Historic Scotland & RCAHMS. Unaffiliated. Digital.
- <2> Interactive Resource/Online Database: RCAHMS. Canmore, online database of the Royal Commission for the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS). 331989.
- <3> Collection/Project Archive: Kilpatrick, A K. 2014. RCAHMS World War One Survey Project. Digital. No. 479.
- <4> Dataset: ARCH. 2015. Invergordon in World War I. Archaeology for Communities in the Highlands (ARCH). Digital. Sites 405, 410, 501-2, 505-6, 509, 512, 520, 601-5, 607, 610, 612, 615-6, 620 & 622.
- <5> Text/Correspondence: Kruse, S.. 2016. Email regarding WWI Admiralty plans for Invergordon. Archaeology for Communities in the Highlands (ARCH). Yes. Digital. 19/01/2016.
|Grid reference||Centred NH 7134 6894 (695m by 496m)|
|Geographical Area||ROSS AND CROMARTY|
Related Monuments/Buildings (0)
Related Investigations/Events (1)
External Links (1)
- https://canmore.org.uk/site/331989/invergordon-royal-naval-dockyard-accommodation (Link to online HES Canmore record)
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