Fort V, also known as Włochy, is part of the outer ring of the Warsaw Fortress which was constructed by the Russians in 1880s. The fortresses, of which there were ultimately 29, weren’t particularly effective in the defence of the city and they had to be upgraded soon after completion due to them already becoming out-of-date against modern weaponry. Then the ridiculous situation occurred in 1909 when the Russians, to save money, started to withdraw from the forts and they destroyed some parts of them. Then, in 1913, it was decided that they’d better start rebuilding them due to the threat of war. They were bloody useless anyway, the city surrendered to the Germans in 1915 without a fight.
One advantage in the Russians leaving Warsaw after the First World War was that a decision was made to allow development outside the ring of forts. The Russians had banned this and it had held the city back from growing. After the First World War, the Poles didn’t really do much with the forts, although they were used when fighting the Germans during the Second World War.
Today, the area of Fort V is a peaceful area with lots of paths and no shortage of lumps and bumps around the place. They could do with some interpretation boards though to try and explain what exactly used to be here, it’s quite a complex site.
Anyway, some photos of the fort…..