Monday, December 27, 2010

Fort Cornwallis Penang

Penang Historical Fort Cornwallis

Located at the north east of the island, this place was where it all begun. Within the vicinity of this fort, you will be able to see many century oldbuildings that are still intact and in-used as commercial offices today. It was at this fort that Captain Francis Light first set foot on this islandin 1786. The original structure was built with palm trunk. From 1808 to 1810, the temporary wooden fort was re-built with bricks and stones using Indianconvicts as labour. It is named after Charles Cornwallis, the Governer- General of Bengal, India at that time. This fort became the first military and administrative centre of the East Asia Company.

This star-shaped fort has cannons mounted along the perimeter of the walls. As you will observe while visiting this fort, this site is strategic in termsof millitary advantage as it is located by the sea opposite the mainland. Today, this 200 plus years old fort still attracts many visitors. The outersurrounding walls are still standing strong similar to what you would have seen in A Famosa, Melaka. A bronze statue of Francis Light stands near theentrance.

The signage welcoming you to the historical fort.

The typical outlook of walls and cannons that surround this fort.

Things To See
Look out for the followings as you go into the fort:

The chapel is located at the south-west of the fort and is the first one built in Penang. It was here that the marriage of Francis Light widow, Martina Rozeus to John Timmers took place in 1799.

Seri Rambai Cannon
The largest cannon here known as Seri Rambai Cannon faces the north coast and was cast in the year 1603. Historically, this cannon was given to the Sultan of Johore by the Dutch. Later on, it fell into the hands of Acheh and installed in Kuala Selangor. Finally, this cannon was seized by the British and placed here in 1871.

Gunpowder Magazine
Built in the year 1814, the gunpowder magazine was used to store explosives to minimize the damaged done in the event they exploded.

There are many galleries on display amongst which are the history of the early Malay Settlements in Penang, the hand-over of Penang by the Sultan of Kedah to the British, the British East India Company, the history of Captain Francis Light, the History of Fort Cornwallist, the archaeology and model of prison cells.

Souvenir Shop, Cafe And Lighthouse
There is a souvenir shop within this fort for you to purchase some goods back home. A Cafe is also provided for visitors who need to rest and have a drink here. A lighthouse and flagstaff are located at the other end of the fort. Make sure you take a picture or two before leaving the fort.

Notice the cannon that depicts the weapons used during the colonial times.

The Lighthouse at the compound of the fort.

Admission Fee & Opening Hours
The admission fee to the fort is RM3/adult and RM2/child.
The address:
Fort Cornwallis
Lebuh Light
Tel: +6 04 261 0262
The operation hours is from 9am to 6:30pm from Mondays to Saturdays. This fort is closed on Sundays.



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