Colin Crosby Heritage Tours

Portsdown Hill

Portsdown Hill, properly known as just Portsdown, is a long chalk hill running behind Portsmouth in Hampshire, with Purbrook and Widley on the mainland side to the North.

It is a 400 foot high line of chalk cliffs which were once, before the formation of Portsea Island on which Portsmouth is built, sea cliffs.

Viewpoints along the ridge give superb views, not only of Portsmouth, but also of Southampton Water, Portsmouth Harbour, the Solent, the Isle of Wight, Langstone Harbour, Hayling Island and Chichester Harbour.

In the 1860s, Lord Palmerston built six forts, facing landward, along the ridge as part of the ring of defences against the French around Portsmouth.

There is a tall monument to Lord Nelson.