Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

Royal Engineers (Fortress ) Company in Hong Kong

Recommended Posts

I wonder if anyone could help me with this query please. My wife’s grandfather was in Hong Kong with this unit from January 1917 until the end of the war. I am asking please if anyone is able to give me any information as to what they may have been doing during this period,  


He had been in the Army before the war and as a reservist was back in again almost from day 1 and was in France in September. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Red Gate 


Fortress Companies were responsible for the maintenance of the defences at those places designated as fortresses. They also worked with Royal Garrison Artillery, operating defence electric lights to illuminate  enemy vessels. These could be fixed or moveable. With regard  to fixed lights, some were designated as "sentry lights" , fixed on a specific point and left on during the hours of darkness. Other fixed lights  were only switched on  if there there was a sign that an enemy vessel was approaching. It would stay on until the vessel had passed through its arc, and then switched off as it passed into the arc of the next light and so one.  They also manned  directing stations which were connected to the various RGA Fire Commands by telephone. Some lights were designated as fighting lights connected to specific batteries which would track or "pin" the vessel with its beam, allowing the battery to range and open fire. The company also provided and generators for the lights.


To give you an idea of the structure the link below will give you an idea of the trades within 40 Fortress Company in the 1911 overseas census. It's at the bottom of the list, post 13.





Edited by Terry_Reeves
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...