DESCRIPTION & FUNCTION
Fort Barrington, named for the Admiral who replaced the earthworks on the site with a permanent stone structure in 1779. Previously called Goat Hill, the hilltop protected St. John’s Harbour from attack when the first earthworks went up probably in the 1650’s. Not only did the fort guard St. John’s Habour, but it also served as an important signal station to alert forces throughout the island of impending attacks. Fort Barrington is the only fort that saw military action in Antigua.
Fort Barrington served as a military defense post beginning in the seventeenth century. In 1652 Prince Rupert, the first member of the Royal Family to visit the West Indies, captured the fort in an attempt to claim Antigua for the Royalists. In 1666, the French invaded Deep Bay and captured Fort Barrington so quickly the English soldiers fled the fort with the Royal flag still flying. In 1790, the fort was reinforced to forestall additional attacks by French forces. Today the remains of Fort Barrington include a powder magazine and two gun platforms that held eight guns. The fort provides magnificent views of St. John’s Harbour and Deep Bay.
ACCESSIBILITY / SAFETY
Fort Barrington can be accessed by a short hike. At the base of the trail up to the fort are many Manchaneel trees, so try not to touch them as you pass. All hiking is done at your own risk.