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Coloured Plan of the Fortifications of Haven Etue, Ambletuse, France

Coloured Plan of the Fortifications of Haven Etue, Ambletuse, France

Cartographer: [Rogers, John ]

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1546

Shelfmark: Cotton Augustus I.ii

Item number: f.73

Genre: Manuscript Map

This is a map of the port Ambelteuse dating from April 1546. The draughtsman was John Rogers a military engineer who trained as a mason, probably at Hampton Court. He worked for Henry VIII making plans and designs for the improvement of royal buildings and defence fortifications. The decision to fortify the inlet at Ambleteuse was partly to halt any French attempt to land troops there and also to provide an alternative harbour which was not overlooked by enemy fire. The Earl of Hertford, who was the King’s ‘lieutenant in parts beyond the sea’ travelled to Ambelteuse to over see the work and with him went John Rogers, Sir Richard Lee and Sir Thomas Wyatt. Henry VIII wished the fortress to have five bastions and after debate whether the land could take the weight but finally five bastions were decided upon. The absence of sufficient landing space for the deposit of building materials meant that these had to be brought overland from Boulogne or from the ‘New Haven’ at Ambelteuse, a factor which delayed building progress. Winter weather caused damage to the exposed building works and the in following May of 1458 the Privy Council was informed that the fort was in so bad a state as to be incapable of defence. This was confirmed in 1549 when Ambleteuse was captured without difficulty by the French . Nothing now remains of the English fort.

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