My first visit to the Post Retief Barracks was in February 2017 during a period of rain that had turned the grass within the fort a lush green.
Four years later, and at the end of winter, not only was the grass dry and pale, but there were further signs of deterioration of these historic buildings designed by Major Charles Selwyn of the Royal Engineers in 1836.
Local clay bricks and sandstone were used in the construction of these buildings – both materials are showing serious signs of wear and tear. A stone lintel that was already bending and cracking four years ago despite being shored up with timber, has cracked further.
Compare the state of the first of the buildings in this row between 1917 and 2021.
There are other aspects of this fort that are worth returning to later. I will end, as I did with my earlier post, with the narrow gate in the wall opposite the officer’s quarters through which one had to pass to draw water from the Koonap River below.