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Fort Nelson Fort Talks


Type:Heritage & History

Fort Nelson, Portsdown Hill Road, Fareham, Hampshire, PO17 6AN

Tel: 01329 233734

Fort Nelson Fort Talks


Fort Nelson hosts a series of after-hours talks, covering all aspects of military history and the area's rich heritage.

Tickets cost £5 per person and include refreshments.

Secret Wartime Britain - Wednesday 5 June 2019, 7pm - 9pm

Colin Philpott heads to Fort Nelson this June to reveal why so few people broke special wartime regulations designed to protect secret information during the Second World War. His fascinating talk will contain testimonies, which have never been revealed before, from men and women who worked in extraordinary circumstances at secret sites.

In the age of Twitter, Instagram and WikiLeaks it is difficult to imagine a world where people kept quiet about state secrets. During the evening, Colin Philpott, author of the book, Secret Wartime Britain, will reveal how during the Second World War thousands of sites across Britain were requisitioned, repurposed or built from scratch to support the war efforts. Colin will share the stories of these factories, command centres, spying bases, decoy airfields, battle rehearsal sites, research facilities, interrogation centres and other wartime locations, exploring how secret the locations really were and why so many remain in the shadows even many years after 1945.

Join Fort Nelson and learn about the true role of the sites which have remained secret for decades. There will also be a rare opportunity for visitors to explore Fort Nelson's atmospheric North tunnel and underground chambers independently before the talk takes place. The main tunnel will be open from 6pm – 7pm.

The British Tommy, Tommy Atkins - Wednesday 17 July 2019, 7.30pm - 9pm

Special guest speaker Michael Forest will explain where the name Tommy Atkins, a generic term for the British soldier in both the First and Second World Wars, originated and how the origin of the name Tommy has its roots in the nineteenth century. Like John Smith or John Doe, Tommy Atkins may or may not have been a reference to a specific person. Why Tommy Atkins?

Tickets for all Fort Talks are available in advance from the Royal Armouries website: or from the Fort Nelson Visitor Centre.

Fort Nelson is a historic monument, rescued from dereliction and carefully restored. It commands spectacular views over Portsmouth Harbour to the south and the picturesque Meon Valley to the north. The Fort is open from 10am – 5pm daily (April – October). Admission is free, parking £3.

Guide Prices

£5 per person, which includes refreshments.


Map & Directions

Opening Times

Secret Wartime Britain (5 June 2019)
Wednesday19:00 - 21:00
The British Tommy, Tommy Atkins (17 July 2019)
Wednesday19:30 - 21:00

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