The Needles Old Battery a Victorian fort built in 1862 and used throughout both World Wars.

Victorian coastal defence and secret rocket testing site perched high above the Needles Rocks
Perched high above the Needles at the extreme tip of the Island, with unrivalled views of the Solent and unspoilt countryside, is the Needles Old Battery a Victorian fort built in 1862 and used throughout both World Wars.

The Battery’s fascinating story is told in a series of newly recreated, atmospheric rooms, whilst vivid cartoons by comic book artist Geoff Campion illustrate the part it played in the history of modern Britain. There are two original guns on the Parade Ground and an underground tunnel leads to a searchlight emplacement with dramatic views over the Needles rocks.

A small exhibition in the underground rooms of The New Battery, further up the headland, reveals the astonishing and little-known story of Britain's Cold War 'race for space', when British-made rockets were tested here under conditions of great secrecy.

Customer Information

Limited disabled parking at Needles Old Battery: small parking area close to the gate. Please contact property for prior arrangement
Adapted toilet at Needles Old Battery. No toilet at Needles New Battery
Wheelchair available
Sensory experience
Induction loop

See website for opening times & prices


No onsite parking. Car park at Alum Bay (not National Trust; minimum charge £4), or in Freshwater Bay (Isle of Wight Council) or Highdown car park SZ325856 (National Trust) and walk over Downs
Enjoy homemade food in our cliff-top tea-room
Drinks and ice-creams available at the New Battery kiosk
Treat yourself to a souvenir in the guardroom shop
Tours available - please contact us before you visit
Groups welcome - please contact us before you visit
Dogs welcome on leads only
Toilets at Needles Old Battery only
Explore the site with a family activity pack
Baby-changing and feeding facilities
Pushchairs and baby back-carriers admitted

Contact Details

The Needles Old Battery
West High Down,
Alum Bay
PO39 0JH

01983754772 Email

Pledge Your Support and Receive the Latest Deals and Offers