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The Chavonnes Battery on the Cape Town harbour front was built by the Dutch East India Company between 1715 and 1726 and designed to protect Table Bay from direct attack. Aside from being a fortification, it also served as a gaol, soldier’s barracks and smallpox isolation hospital over the years. In 1860, a breakwater and the Alfred Basin was added to the V & A harbour and much of the original battery was either destroyed or concealed under rubble. The battery lay buried until 1999 when a company, seeking to build its head office on the land, had the area professionally excavated and approximately one third of the original Chavonnes Battery was uncovered. Architects planned the head office building over part of the excavation and in 2012 the Chavonnes Battery Museum was officially opened to the public. Visitors are transported via boardwalks through the ruins to gain an interesting insight into the old building techniques and to... Show more
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