ERODED BY THE WAVES
The amazing Ocean beach on Bribie Island, Queensland. Is home to more than 10 WW2 forts that are embedded into the sand at the waters edge. Join me on my journey from fort to fort along 1.25km of Ocean Beach, and uncover the years of history that will soon be washed away with the tide.
HISTORY OF FORT BRIBIE
The construction of Fort Bribie started in 1940 a year after World War Two started and ended two years later in 1942. Fort Bribie consisted of two 6-inch guns, two searchlights, a observation post, two mine control huts, a signals operation room and various other buildings all built to defend the North West channel into Moreton Bay. Currently many of the buildings that make up Fort Bribie are partially if not fully buried under the sand, or have been severely destroyed or eroded by the ocean and wind. Therefore you are unable to access or enter the forts due to them being unstable, and the government has blocked all the entrances.
South searchlight post
After driving for quite a while along a sand 4WD track that leads through the bush you arrive at Ocean Beach where if you drive North the first fort can be seen. Due to the state the forts are in most of them are boarded up, but the South Searchlight is one of the few buildings that is not sealed shut. There is not much to see inside this building as most of it has collapsed, although the fence that surrounds the fort is completely covered in sand in some parts making you able to just walk over the fence and into the fort. Keep in mind the no trespassing signs and the 50-unit fine if you are caught, as well as the building could collapse at any minute.
South gun emplacement
The South Gun Emplacement camp is one of the only buildings on Bribie Island that has a roof still intact, making it one of the most beautiful forts I have ever seen. The South Gun Emplacement camp was the second stop on our list, and one of the best. If you make your way around the back of the building you will find some stairs and up the top if you look through the bars, is a spectacular view of the ocean through building. (as shown above)
North gun emplacement
Just a short 100m walk up the beach and you arrive at the second Gun Emplacement. Unlike the other building, its roof has sadly collapsed, blocking the view from the top. This shows that these captivating pieces of history will soon be destroyed.
North Searchlight post
The North Searchlight Post was my favourite building as at high tide it is partially submerged in the ocean, and at low tide it is filled with sand. As well as this one of the windows on the Searchlight has not been sealed allowing access to the bottom floor. This structure is also the northern most building of Fort Bribie and is the end of the 4Wd track on Ocean Beach.
There is a few buildings that are not completely destroyed of buried, that I have not mentioned. For example the plotting room, which all that is left is the outline of it on the ground. The Mine Control Huts, which consist of two small buildings almost completely covered by a sand dune. And the Signals Operation Room, that was once buried by sand but has recently been uncovered and shows the top half of the building, as well as a door which leads down underground.