Nothe Fort Volunteer Open Evening: Wednesday 22nd & Thursday 23rd May 2013 From 7pm to 9pm
We are inviting people to come down to the Fort to find out all about volunteering at this fantastic museum.
If you are coming up to retirement or have been retired for a while and finding that gardening and golf aren't really filling your time. We may well have the answer. You may just want to make new friends and widen your social circle, whatever the reason we would like to meet you. There are many different things to do from joining the Fort Artillery to helping greet our visitors on Reception, to portraying Mrs Mop in our WW2 educational programme or being a marshal at one of our concerts.
The Volunteers are the lifeblood of Nothe Fort and undertake a varied range of managerial, administrative, professional and skilled roles necessary to protect the fabric of the Fort, operate the museum and manage the events that are held at the Fort.
During the period when the Fort is open to the public the volunteers man the reception, shop and museum areas. When the Fort is closed to the public the volunteers undertake essential repairs to the fabric of the Fort and build new exhibits for the museum. The volunteers also undertake research work and care of the artefacts in the museum’s collection.
Nothe Fort is also a good place to make new friends and play a vital and rewarding role in the protection of an important part of the Nation’s heritage. To discuss the varied roles of our volunteers please just come along for a cuppa and find out what this place is all about. A warm welcome awaits you at Nothe Fort.
No qualification required, just a good sense of humour.
Jersey Evacuees Association Visit Nothe Fort:
As part of a planned trip to Weymouth for an Unveiling Ceremony, the Jersey Evacuees Association paid a visit to Nothe Fort. They came to see Nothe Fort’s infamous WW2 Evacuee Programme for Primary Schools in action. They were met by former evacuee co-ordinator and Fort volunteer Andy Stewart who gave them a tour of the site. The whole experience brought back memories of their time in Weymouth as a young evacuee. They saw first hand how Nothe Fort keeps such memories alive for future generations and met the young children from Stoborough Primary School who were here for the day.
The Ceremony was to acknowledge recognition of the evacuation and settling of 6,500 Jersey residents to Weymouth during WW2 This will took place on the 9th November 2012 at Weymouth Pavilion where a plaque was unveiled.
Baldrick Meets Baldrick:
Nothe Fort Filming for Channel 4 - 3rd July 2012
Wildfire Television is currently making a 4-part series for C4, entitled ‘Walking Through History’ with Tony Robinson. In each episode Tony Robinson will take the viewer on a visually spectacular walk through part of Britain, uncovering stories related to a particular historical period, theme or event.
The first programme they are planning will be close to or along the Dorset Coast, uncovering and exploring its second world war history. It’s a rugged coastal walk which explores the reaction to the fall of France in 1940 and construction of the defences against invasion, then charting the local history as the tide of war turns against the Nazis, before finishing with the preparations for D-Day.
They highlighted the importance of Nothe Fort as a naval base and anti-aircraft gun post and ammunition store during WW2. They spoke to a range of people who could tell me more, including experts and historians, knowledgeable locals and men and women who remember the war effort in the Weymouth and Portland area. The series will be screened early next year.
Fab Beatles Concert August 2011:
The Fort hosted this popular tribute band from Exeter playing at this venue for the second year in a row.
Formed in 1991 they have risen through sheer hard work & dedication to be one of the most sought-after Beatles tribute bands in the world today, with concerts performed all over the UK, Europe, Middle East & the Americas.
The Fab Beatles show started with early "Hamburg" material progressing right through all the singles & album tracks to "Let It Be" & the "break-up", with a repertoire that is second to none!
Our audience of nearly 400 for this special Sunday night were mainly local people and they had a ball singing along and dancing to the great Beatle's classics.
Watch out for our 2012 music concerts and come on down with your friends and family to Nothe Fort and enjoy great entertainment performed in Weymouth’s best outdoor music venue with excellent acoustics, unique atmosphere and some of the finest views on the Jurassic Coast.
Great Drama! Great Setting! Nothe Fort Hosts the “Tempest” June 2011
Nothe Fort welcomed Weymouth Drama Club(WDC) back for this extremely popular and contemporary production of the Tempest. The setting was ideal for this show and knowing how much work and professionalism goes into each production, I’m sure all our audiences throughout the week had a great night out.
Nothe Fort were delighted to be working in partnership with Weymouth Drama Club and supporting the arts in the local community. The high standard of quality drama continues to make an impression with a rich variety of productions throughout the year. Midsummer Shakespeare has that special sense of place and English tradition and what better place to perform than the unique historic setting of Nothe Fort with its stunning views and excellent acoustics. This was an enjoyable and memorable success and we look forward to maintaining our long term partnership and relationship with WDC for future events.
A Great journey into Nothe Fort’s History:
FORMER MP turned TV presenter Michael Portillo visited Weymouth’s Nothe Fort on the 3rd June 2011 to learn more about the borough’s wartime past for his new TV series.
As part of the new series of Great British Railway Journeys presenter Mr Portillo and his TV crew visited landmarks connected with the borough’s involvement in D-Day.
The former MP for Enfield Southgate started the day at the Nothe Fort and met with Weymouth resident Ken Warren who shared his childhood memories of the Second World War. The pair then walked around the town visiting the sites that Mr Warren vividly remembered from the war. Mr Portillo said he was ‘delighted’ to be in the borough. He said: “I’m delighted to be in the fort, I’m just sorry I didn’t have enough time to look round the museum. The fort makes a wonderful location.
NOTHE Fort Volunteers said they were very pleased that the location had been used for filming. Administration manager Steven Booth said: “We’re delighted that they chose the fort for filming because of its links with the Second World War and the role that Weymouth and Portland played in the D-Day invasion. “This can only heighten our profile and it’s particularly welcome in light of the 2012 Olympics.” The fort was used an anti-aircraft gun emplacement when a garrison was stationed at the vantage point.
The new series of Great British Railway Journeys will be screened early next year.
Age is no barrier for Nothe Fort volunteers achieving academic award:
Weymouth’s premier attraction is proudly congratulating five of its dedicated volunteers who have just completed a NVQ in customer service and retail management with flying colours. This involved written work and in-house assessment, undertaken during the Fort’s main opening season from May to September 2010.
Steven Booth, Fort Administration Manager, said “when I approached Kinston Mauward college to look into the possibility of in-house training I was very impressed by their willingness to help and get the ball rolling. This is particularly beneficial for our front line staff working in the hospitality trade and even more relevant with 2012 fast approaching. I was not sure if our volunteers would sign up for this, or find the task a bit daunting (especially being on the mature side of life), however come forward they did and the rest as they say is history”
Bryony Blair, Retail Assessor and Coordinator at Kingston Maurward College said “The customer service and retail skills demonstrated by the volunteers at Nothe Fort are excellent; as volunteers, this is a great achievement demonstrating the suitability of NVQ qualifications in all areas including the charity and voluntary sector.”
The management of Nothe Fort are keen to develop the Fort for community use. We are Fortunate that we have experienced committed volunteers to help us achieve this aim. As the popularity grows we are offering a more diverse product all the year round and look forward to benefiting from 2012 with a legacy which can take this Fort to another level.
Our working relationship with our community partnership has gone from strength to strength creating increased income generation opportunities. However we never lose sight of why we are here and our mission as temporary caretakers of part of the nation’s heritage.
Nothe Fort has to compete in a competitive market place to attract visitors and much needed income to this site. We have a big responsibility, not just to preserve this monument for future generations, but to enhance the visitor experience and educational learning to the local community. It is a credit to our volunteers that this process is continuing.
We are working with many partners to increase awareness of where we are (often hidden from the main concentration of tourists on the esplanade in Weymouth) and more importantly what we have to offer. We believe we offer value for money and how many other attractions in Dorset genuinely admit children for only £1?
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer at this popular award winning historical attraction, please contact Nothe Fort on 01305 766626
Victorian Military Tattoo September 2009:
The inaugural Victorian Military Tattoo hosted by Nothe Fort and Gardens in support of Help for Heroes was a great performing colourful spectacle. This type of event was a first for Weymouth & Portland and the Nothe peninsular was carefully chosen for its authentic location and ability to create the right Victorian atmosphere.
What made such an impact and lasting impression was how so many people made an effort to be in period costume, all adding to the living history, The soldiers all stayed in tents in Nothe Gardens and interacted with visitors throughout the weekend.
The procession of Queen Victoria in her finest horse drawn carriage, accompanied by the mounted Hussars, Die Hard Middlesex Regiment, Green Howards (all the way from Yorkshire), Cambridgeshire Regiment Band and our own Nothe Fort Artillery Volunteers formed a precision marching colourful military procession.
This time (at long last) we had one of the best weekends regarding weather for some time, which all added to the spirit of the occasion.
We would like to say a big thank you to Major John Hurst (event organiser), all the re-enactors, Nothe Fort Volunteers, Weymouth & Portland Council and all the visitors who witnessed this fantastic and entertaining spectacle.
All we ask is to have more events in the Borough like this and the message that needs to go out is to watch this space, we are busy planning a variety of cultural 2010 events for the benefit of locals and visitors alike.
Nothe Fort Delivers All Inspiring Event:
The Nothe Fort Events Team formed last Autumn have had their “Baptism of Fire”, or rather Water. On the week-end of 6th & 7th June 2009 they held a 65th D Day Anniversary Celebration. Two days of fantastic displays by visiting WWII Re-enacting groups, including bomb disposal, field hospital, WWII radio communications, military vehicles and also Home Front stalls advising on Wartime cookery, allotments and Make do and Mend.
The jewel in the crown was the “Proms in the Fort” concert held on the Saturday evening was a huge success, despite torrential rain. Twenty five schoolchildren joined the Light Cavalry Band for this evening, playing classical music remembering the dark and sombre days of the war as well as more light hearted tunes. They ended the performance with the familiar all inspiring promenade favourites. Many in the t audience, tossed their umbrellas aside to wave their flags singing with gusto, dancing and cheering the band.
We would like to take this opportunity of thanking those young people who took part and played so very well and the lads from the Army Cadets who made the collection throughout the week end for the Army Benevolent Fund, raising a total of £250.
The feed-back from re-enactors and visitors alike has been “Please Give us More!” So look out for the next event and don’t miss it.
The next event at Nothe Fort is the Military Festival with Re-enactors covering nearly 200 years – cannons, muskets and rifles. A great day out for all the family, as well as military enthusiasts - Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th August, see you there.
Fort Artillery welcomes Cruise Liner:
Seven Seas Voyager" is the first ship operated by U.S. cruise giant Regent Seven Seas Cruises Inc. to visit Portland and the success of this call will hopefully lead to more bookings by vessels from this prestigious line in the future.
Seven Seas Voyager carries as many as seven hundred and fifty passengers and four hundred and fifty crew, many of whom took time to visit Portland & the surrounding hinterland including Weymouth, Abbotsbury, Corfe Castle, Maiden Castle and Minterne House.
The ship and her passengers and crew received a very warm welcome. The arrival was greeted by the re-enactment team from the Nothe Fort Artillery Volunteers who fired a three shot canon salute as the ship entered its berth.
Portland Port Vessel Services Manager, Anne Alcock, says, "We have devoted a lot of time and energy to expanding Portland's profile within the cruise industry and the increase in bookings for 2010 and beyond are testament to this. We are very aware of just how important the ships' visits are both to the Port itself and to the wider local economy. It has been estimated that each cruise passenger spends an average of £80.00 on each trip ashore which lends a much needed boost locally to revenue from tourism. This is especially important at this time of worldwide financial crisis."
Weymouth Vintage 2009 Bus Running day:
Nothe Fort, in partnership with Devon & Dorset Bus Preservation Group, hosted a different sort of day offering a free bus from the fort to Weymouth College and back all day on Sunday 21st June 2009. Any visitors presenting an event programme were given discount off admission to Nothe Fort.
The annual event is organised by the Devon & Dorset Bus Preservation Group and will be based at Weymouth College. Robin Woodcock, event organiser, said “two years ago we managed to stage the first vintage bus event in the town since 1980. This is our third show and running day in the Borough of Weymouth & Portland and proves very appealing to all ages. The families love to ride for fun and our more senior citizens for pure nostalgia”.
The Nothe Fort service 100, mainly by small petrol engine buses in the shape of a 1929 Dennis toastrack bus, which used to climb the Great Orme in Llandudno and a Bedford MLC which used to operate school services for Dorset County Council and has now been in the safe care of owner Norman Aish for over 40 years.
Steven Booth, Administration Manager at Nothe Fort said “we were very happy to support and host this special annual event which will gives visitors the opportunity to ride from the college to Nothe Fort via the scenic beach front and old harbour, creating a fun and enjoyable experience to all who board the bus. Nothe Fort has improved its facilities and visitor experience over the years and offers a wide variety of visitor services, as well as many varied regular cultural and historic events”.
All Hands to the Pump:
As many local schools will testify, Nothe Fort’s Evacuee Experience is second to none when it comes to reliving life as an evacuee in the 1940s.
Evacuee Experience team leader Andy Stewart said “the fort offers great educational value and fun for the children”. “The children experience an old 1940s school room supervised by a very strict headmaster complete with cane, Air raid shelter drill, Weymouth at War, World War II shop and rationing and Mrs Mop doing the washing at home. He added, “The World War II Evacuee Experience for primary school children has become extremely popular with over 3000 of them coming each year and is designed to meet curriculum requirements. The children are always keen to learn, have a great deal of fun in role play and we always look forward to their visits”. Schools are coming from all over Somerset and Dorset as they discover what benefit this has for their children.
As we wish to keep up the good work and develop our educational community programme, we are always looking for new volunteers to help with this very enjoyable and rewarding activity.
To find out more information or book the World War II Evacuee Experience, please contact Nothe Fort on 01305 766626.