Dutch Water Line


Location: 52 7'9.76"N    5 5'20.03"E


1e Polderweg 4
3563 MC  Utrecht

In 1629 there was already an earth work made at this location.
In 1787 new earth works were made.

In those day's at this location was a Ferry and an Inn. The fort is named after the last.
It was an important approach of roads and waterway's to the town Utrecht.

In 1821 a small earth work fortress, with a moat was made.

In 1849 the fortress was enlarged a bid and in 1850, a small gun tower was built.

In 1877 a wooden artillery shed was built. In 1882 a new fort keeper house was built outside the fortress island.
In 1883, three small dynamite storage sheds were built on the fortress.

In 1885 a flooding boards storage shed was built and replaced in 1898 by another artillery shed. 

In 1905, an iron storage shed was moved from Lunet 1 to fortress at the Klop.

In 1913 wooden troop barracks were built.

In 1939, four concrete shelters type "Piramide" were built on the fortress.
However, they were not finished, after the army decided to make there main stand against the Germans at the "Grebbe Linie".

Here you see the gun tower before the restoration (photo by Paul Berends).

Here the gun tower is being restored.

The gun tower is almost the same as the "Westbatterij" in Muiden.
It has a cellar and a ground floor, it had also a parapet with guns and lookout on top.

At the picture you look at the bulge against the gun tower.
In the bulge is the staircase to the roof.
You can see a part of the red door on the roof.

The bulge housed also the flanking guns (photo by Titia Blom).

The gun tower had its own moat, that seems to be also restored (photo by Titia Blom).

The fortress at the Klop is part of the first screen of fortresses east of Utrecht, of which the "bomb free" thick brick buildings were built in the first half of the 19th century.
This screen was on maximum shooting distance from the town, to keep the town free of an artillery bombardment.

However the artillery kept improving and at the end of the 19th century a second screen of fortresses was built at more distance from the town.

However in the 20th century aircraft were invented and in 1940, the Germans started to bomb the big towns to force the Dutch to surrender (photo by Titia Blom).

Here you look from the round going corridor in the tower, into two of the gun rooms (photo by Titia Blom).

Since this fortress became a second line fortress, the gun tower was not modified and is more or less in original shape.

All the fortresses owned by the city Utrecht are restored and re-used, Utrecht takes good care of these historical objects, see their very good website (in Dutch): http://www.utrecht.nl/smartsite.dws?id=272952

Here the core is not open, but contains air channels (photo by Titia Blom).

These photo's are from the site http://www.hollandsewaterlinie.nl/index.asp

More pictures will follow, after I have made my own survey at the fortress at the Klop.
For more history see the Dutch language site http://www.fortaandeklop.nl/

The fortress is now completely restored and houses a restaurant, a lunchroom, an Inn with group apartments and bed & breakfast rooms, a camping with 25 places for tents only and also large rooms for business meetings, presentations, workshops, etc.
More information in the Dutch language: http://www.fortaandeklop.com/

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Last revised on 24-12-2012