FORTS TRAIL IN SARAWAK
Fort Margherita was built in 1879 to guard Kuching’s river approaches from pirates. Named after Charles Brooke’s wife, Ranee Margaret, it was never put to the use for which it had been originally intended; only attack on the fort, though unsuccessful, came from the air when the Japanese bombed Kuching on Friday, 19 December 1941. This imposing from 1971 served as a Police Museum from 1971 before being handed over to the State Government. After extensive restoration work, it now houses the Brooke Gallery which showcases the history and legacy of Sarawak under the Brooke era.
Fort Alice was built in 1864 during the reign of the second Rajah Brooke, Sir Charles Brooke and is the oldest building in Sri Aman. The fort was built as a government office as well as to avoid attacks on the merchant ships and ngayau activities around the downstream of Batang Lupar River.
Originally built in Nangga Skrang and named Fort James, in 1853 Fort James was attacked and a Rajah officer named Alan Lee was killed. As a result of this event, Fort James has been moved to Simanggang where its location is more strategic and protected from enemy threats. Uniquely, Fort Simanggang was built using the original material of The James Fort itself. The fort was later named Fort Alice, the name of his wife Margaret Alice Lili de Windt. The fort was refurbished in 2013 and is now being used as the Sri Aman Heritage Museum.
In March 2015, Jason Brooke paid a visit to Fort Lily, Betong. This magnificent fort was built in 1855. Jason met with the Resident, Datu Romie Sigan Daniel who has hopes of restoring the fort to its original splendour following the impressive renovation by the State Government of nearby Fort Alice, Sri Aman.