Home Bolt Action A Visit to Fort Siloso, Singapore

A Visit to Fort Siloso, Singapore


Xpidemix visited Fort Siloso to have a closer look at the decommissioned coastal artillery battery in Sentosa, Singapore. It consists of 12 such batteries which made up “Fortress Singapore” at the start of World War II, and saw action during the Battle of Singapore. We are joined by one of our Bolt Action player Rudy who gave us a short tour and flourished us with historical facts of the site!

Overview of the Fort. The word “Siloso” of the fort’s name is derived from a Malayan word meaning “rock”. There was a huge rock at the mouth of Singapore’s harbour which imposed a hazard to passing shipping.

As part of the planned fortifications, Mount Siloso’s top was blown off to flatten it for the installation of coastal-artillery gun platforms. By the 1880s, several gun batteries were located on Mount Siloso and Mount Serapong (facing north towards mainland Singapore on Sentosa’s northern coast) on Pulau Blakang Mati, becoming a stronghold of British naval defences in Singapore.

1939 25 Pounder Howitzer Gun
It was fast firing and hard hitting but also easily manoeuvrable when pulled by a quad tractor and limber. In Bolt Action game this is considered a light artillery gun and is operated by a crew of three.

The British developed and intoduced the 25 pounder Howitzer gun in the late 1930s as a new artillery weapon combining functionalities of the gun and howitzer. It could operate as a field gun, firing direct at visible targets and as a howitzer by shooting over obstacles. It remained in British service until 1967 when it was relegated to training units.

Overview diorama of Fort Siloso
Parbuckling of the guns. This was the method used to bring the heavy guns to the top of the fort.

There were other guns seen here at Fort Siloso… so we will not reveal any spoilers. Exploring the various tunnels, bunkers and command posts will give you a glimpse of the past and the kind of enviroment it was back in the day.

Fort Siloso was then converted into a military museum in 1974, displaying its history and various naval guns. Other coastal guns (both British and Japanese) from different parts of Singapore, such as a pair of Japanese naval cannons discovered and brought over from Mandai, were put here for display. It had previously held the display of the British surrender of Singapore in February 1942 until its relocation to the former Ford Motor Factory (the actual site of the British surrender) in Bukit Timah in February 2006.

Fort Siloso was gazetted as a national monument on 15 February 2022.

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