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King’s Barracks at Fort St. George to be restored

King’s Barracks was built in 1756 and British battalions camped there for about two centuries. This picture is from 1910 Photo: Vintage Vignettes   | Photo Credit: Vintage_ Vignettes

Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) will take up the restoration and conservation of King’s Barracks, the largest heritage building inside Fort St. George, this financial year, according to G. Maheshwari, superintending archaeologist, ASI, Chennai Circle.

Currently, the Army runs a canteen stores depot (CSD) in the majestic, two-storeyed King’s Barracks, named so because the King’s Regiment used to bivouac there.

It was built in 1756 and extended in 1762. British battalions camped there for about two centuries.

The Army has stacked hundreds of crates inside the heritage building and on the spacious ground in front of it. An Army official said CSD would move from King’s Barracks to Pallavaram, a Chennai suburb, in the coming months.

After the Army moves out, ASI will begin restoration works, Dr. Maheshwari told  The Hindu earlier this week.

Clearing the ‘jungle’ inside has begun as part of a campaign to restore the Fort to its original beauty, on the occasion of the 375th anniversary of the founding of Madras. There are several patches inside the Fort, dense with trees and shrubs.

“ASI and the Army share the responsibility of protecting the heritage buildings inside Fort St. George. So, jungle clearance has begun inside the Fort,” said Dr. Maheshwari. ASI will fund the project and provide the manpower, while Army personnel will monitor the work.

After this, ASI will take up conservation of the rampart wall and remove silt inside the bastions, she said.


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Printable version | Jan 20, 2022 3:17:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/chen-society/kings-barracks-at-fort-st-george-to-be-restored/article6361086.ece

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