JULIA FULLERTON-BATTEN

Project Description

TRAGEDY AT THE GRAIN TOWER, 2018

The Grain Tower is an off-shore fort that was built in the middle of the 19th Century to protect the River Thames from invasion by the French navy. It stands 600 metres out to sea and can only be reached from the shoreline by boat at high tide or by a causeway when the tide is out. The tower was initially oval and three stories high with 3.6metre thick walls. It is named after the next nearest town of Grain in Kent and was manned by a gun crew housed in a barracks with officers’ quarters and a store-house for provisions and ammunition. The various parts of the building were connected by elevated gangways.

The Times newspaper reported in a brief article on the 23rd May 1867, that Marie Eugenie, the young daughter of Captain E. F. S. Lloyd of the Royal Engineers had died suddenly at the Grain Tower. We can assume that she was residing in the barracks with her father and mother; also, that she probably died of tuberculosis, which was a very common cause of death at that time or experienced a fatal accident.

In my image we see the distraught father carrying the body of his precious daughter across the causeway to her burial place on the mainland in Grain churchyard.

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