Aldershot Military Museum

Barracks in Aldershot

The British Army first came to the barren heathland of Aldershot in 1854. It proved an ideal military base, close to London and Portsmouth. It was divided into the North Camp and the South Camp, either side of the Basingstoke Canal. The soldiers were first housed in bell tents and later in wooden huts, which were in turn replaced by brick built barracks in the 1890s. Much of this Victorian camp was demolished in the 1960s.

North Camp, Aldershot
Situated north of the Basingstoke Canal, North Camp has grown into a mixture of civilian and military life. Although the term formally applies to the military town, local shops and businesses in the area have developed into a small community known locally as 'North Camp'. The original wooden huts in North Camp were built by Mr Hemmimgs, a civilian contractor at a cost of £100,263.

Following the Barracks Act of 1890, North Camp was rebuilt, with barracks of Blenheim, Lille, Malplaquet, Oudenarde, Ramillies and Tournay forming the lines. The new barracks were built by Henry Wells, a locally based building contractor. The lines then became known as the Marlborough Lines. The barracks in this area commemorated the victories of John Churchill, First Duke of Marlborough, during the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1713). Marlborough Lines formed the reconstructed North Camp.

North Camp 1866
Centre Road, North Camp 1866

South Camp, Aldershot
The original wooden huts of South Camp were built by contractors Haywood and Nixon at a cost of £163,000.

Henry Wells built the barracks which replaced the wooden huts, following the Barrack Act of 1890. The reconstructed South Camp became known as Stanhope Lines, which consisted of Albuhera, Barossa, Corunna, Gibraltar, Maida, Buller, Mandora and McGrigor barracks. The barracks in this area commemorated the victories of John Churchill, First Duke of Marlborough, during the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1713). Marlborough Lines formed the reconstructed North Camp.

South Camp
South Camp 1866

Marlborough Lines
The barracks in this area commemorated the victories of John Churchill, First Duke of Marlborough, during the War of the Spanish Succession 1701-1713. Marlborough Lines formed the reconstructed North Camp.

Stanhope Lines
Stanhope Lines formed the reconstructed South Camp and was named after Edward Stanhope, Secretary of State for War 1886-92.

Bordon and Longmoor
The area around Bordon and Longmoor had been purchased by the War Department and used for training since the mid 1880s. The first camp, for a brigade of infantry, was built at Longmoor while artillery barracks were constructed at Bordon. However, because of complaints about the marshy state of the ground at Longmoor and its unhealthy effect on the troops, the War Office decided to move the infantry to Bordon. The Royal Engineers constructed two parallel light railway tracks, 22 feet apart, from Longmoor to Bordon; the huts were lifted complete onto trolleys and hauled by teams of horses to their new site. Between 1903 and 1906 sixty-eight huts were thus removed.

Wellington Lines
Wellington Lines formed the original permanent barracks, built between 1856 and 1859.
In 1891 this area was renamed after the Duke of Wellington.

Montgomery Lines
Built on the original site of Corunna, Barossa and Albuhera Barracks. Named after famous airborne actions of Arnhem, Holland, 18-26 September 1944, Bruneval, 27/28 February 1942, Normandy Invasion, 6 June 1944, Rhine Crossing, 24 March 1945. Known as the Montgomery Lines after Field Marshal the Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, Colonel Commandant of the Parachute Regiment 1944 -1956, who officially opened them on 7 April 1965. These barracks are still in use.