Owner barricades himself inside Solent fort

The owner of No Man’s Land fort in the Solent has reportedly barricaded himself inside in a bid to deny estate agents access in a dispute over ownership.

Harmesh Pooni bought No Man’s Land fort in 2004 and rented it out for £25, 000 per day, but it was shut down after the bacteria that causes Legionnaires disease was found there.

Mr Pooni’s backers then went bust, and administrators KPMG put the fort up for sale. Mr Pooni insists that he is the rightful owner, and has barricaded himself inside with the only set of keys to the property. He has lashed tables to the fort’s helipads to stop helicopters landing and posted notices warning trespassers that they face prosecution.

No Man’s Land fort was completed in 1870, and sold by the MoD in 1963, eventually being converted into a hotel. Mr Pooni told the Independent, “Even if they get an order to evict me, I shall carry on fighting in the courts. No one is going to want to buy it with the thought that it might not be legally theirs hanging over them.”