ARMY & NAVAL BASE OVERVIEW
Between 1931 and 1960, the Island played an important part in South Africa’s military history – as a fortified station and home to a large number of personnel of the armed forces. During this military period, the Island was not used as a hospital nor was it used as a prison. It served solely as the military security of the country as per a Government Gazette of the 22 May 1936 which stated that it would be “reserved for military purposes”. However, Robben Island did not become an active defensive site until 1939 when it served to protect Allied interests up to 1945.