Built in the 1940s, during the Second World War, to protect Wellington from possible enemy attack. Wrights Hill Fortress is located in Karori.
Surrounded by native bush, the long-range coastal battery consists of an underground network of tunnels, operation rooms, and three gun emplacements.
The two 23-centimetre guns, originally from England, could fire a 172-kilogram shell up to 30 kilometres. (Cancellation of a third gun happened after the Pacific war situation improved.) The guns were only ever fired for testing purposes.
Training took place at the fortress up to the mid-1950s. In the 1960s, the guns were cut up for scrap and sold.
In 1989, the Karori Lions Club opened the complex to the public for the first time. In 1992, the Wrights Hill Fortress Restoration Society formed and has worked since then to restore and preserve the fortress. The fortress is typically only open to the public four times a year.
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