Carry On Fort Lytton!
Issued: 27 Mar 2023
“Carry On Fort Lytton” is the new educational program guaranteed to keep younger school students entertained this coming school holidays.
Managed by the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS), the historic and heritage listed Fort Lytton is one of Brisbane’s best kept secrets.
Fort Lytton was used for the defence of Brisbane until the end of the Second World War.
Built in 1881, on the banks of the Brisbane River at Lytton, it is a pentagonal fortress concealed behind grassy embankments.
“Carry On Fort Lytton” celebrates much of what the fort was designed for, albeit in 1944.
“It’s a dramatic scenario done as a re-enactment, especially suited for children aged between 6 and 12,” said Fort Lytton’s Ranger Daley Donnelly.
“It's 1944 and new recruits have arrived at Fort Lytton, but there seems to be a bit of a mix up, because there are both boys and girls arriving.
“Sergeant Wilson is flummoxed, but Corporal Jones of the Australian Women's Army Service has a plan to get them through their inspection at the end of the first day.
“While it’s all in fun, we’ve based the re-enactment on real history.
“In the Second World War, women were recruited into the Australian Women’s Army Service – the AWAS.
“Fort Lytton was an important Australian training base and the AWAS provided much-needed support.
“Carry On Fort Lytton is a way of bringing the history of those years into the 21st century, for a generation whose great-grandparents would have been their own age, or younger, during that turbulent time.
“Carry On Fort Lytton is a go-back-in-time, hands-on activity-based, experience for school-aged children, using drama to engage them in real learning and great fun,” Ranger Daley said.
Timed especially for the school holidays, the re-enactment runs from 10am to 12.30pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday 11, 12, and 13 April, with a ticket price of $20 per student (with no charge for accompanying adults).
Bookings are essential for this holiday program and can be made by telephoning (07) 3393 4647.
Fort Lytton is one of several coastal fortifications built along Australia's coast in the 19th century to safeguard shipping lanes and ports from possible enemy raids.
From 1881 until the 1930s, it was Brisbane's front line of defence and is regarded as the birthplace of Queensland's military history.
Regular training camps in military warfare were a highlight of Queensland's political and social calendar during those times.
Fort Lytton is a classic example of a coastal fortress surrounded by a water-filled moat, and its heavy armaments concealed behind grassy ramparts and connected by underground passages.
After World War II, the fort outlived its usefulness and fell into disrepair until a petroleum refining company took over the site in 1963.
The fort and its surrounds became a national park in 1989 which today protects this important link with Queensland’s and Australia’s military past.
Fort Lytton is listed on the Queensland Heritage Register and details of the National Park, including opening times and entry fees that may be payable.