Wednesday, 3 August 2011

The Bailey Guard Gate



The Bailey Guard Gate


During the siege, the gateway was banked up from the inside with earth, so when the first relieving force arrived, they made their entrance through the defensive enclosure immediately to the right of the gateway. Known as Aitkens' Battery, it was manned by Lieutenant Robert Hope Moncrieff Aitken and the remnants of the 13th Native Infantry to which he belonged.  For their defense  they constructed during the siege a battery for an 18 pounder gun to the left of the Bailey Guard Gate.  The road leading from the gateway into the compound ascends steeply –  in the event that the gate should have been forced, two 9 pounders and an 8 inch howitzer were put in position on the road place to shower grape and canister into the assailants thus completely commanding the ascent from the gateway.  A triangular building which formed the external portion of the Bailey Guard was abandoned, and today is no longer visible.
For his service during the Siege of Lucknow, Lieutenant Aitken received the Victoria Cross.


Memorial to Robert Hope Moncrieff Aitken, in the grounds of the Residency

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