The Russians Are Coming
Throughout the 1800's Sydney lay vulnerable to attack from real and imagined enemies; it's wealth and strategic location were a temptation to nations with navies in the Pacific but news from Britain in regard to international geopolitical manoeuvrings was always months behind and so paranoia increased.
As Britain gradually withdrew its navy from Australia, the defence of Port Jackson ( Sydney Harbour) became an all-consuming and ongoing project on a huge scale. Heavy fortifications with massive gun batteries were constructed to protect the harbour entrance and inner harbour from enemy invaders. �
Fortunately, when Britain and France declared war on Russia in 1853, no immediate attack on Sydney eventuated, but additional battery sites were ordered (later suspended) for Middle and South heads as defence against anticipated raids by the Russian Navy and others.
The fortifications were eventually disbanded but were used once again for ammunition storage and military training during World War 2 including the notorious ‘tiger cages’ where soldiers were once trained to resist torture.
This series is a photographic impression of the defence fort at Middle Head overlooking the entrance to Sydney Harbour. Texture and shape in architecture are ongoing interests in my photographic work and the so the sandstone structures at this fort are , for me, an ideal subject.