Well it had to happen, sooner or later I would be paying some attention to the coastal history of Broadstairs. So all this week I have been reading up and researching Fort House and the transition to Bleak House to the point where I feel I almost have square eyes.
Fort house was built in 1801, and this week I have been researching Captain George Gooch of the English East India Company the man who had it built, I have found his grave in St Peter's churchyard and I am currently looking up info on the North Cliff Battery that defended Broadstairs Harbour under his command during the Napoleonic wars when invasion was looming in 1803.
However, like all research it is so easy to get side tracked especially when I come across one of my passions. In this case it is anything to do with the Maritime Museum that was once housed in Bleak House, and the work of Louis Longhi and Bill Lapthorne in setting up the Museum. This newspaper cutting from the Isle of Thanet Gazette was sent to me by Suzannah Foad of Margate Local & Family History and is from 1982 when divers working three miles off Broadstairs found a wreck of a Spritsail barge. Amongst the cargo they found Miller's item including six large mill stones and a large copper bowl engraved Joshua Shears. The bowl weighs half a ton and is half an inch thick.
Louis Longhi is pictured holding Hamilton Mineral Water bottles that were also found on the wreck.