Sheerness /ʃɪərˈnɛs/ is a town and civil parish in contrast to the mouth of the River Medway on the north-west corner of the Isle of Sheppey in north Kent, England. With a population of 12,000 it is the largest town on the island.
Sheerness began as a fort built in the 16th century to protect the River Medway from naval invasion. In 1665 plans were first laid by the Navy Board for Sheerness Dockyard, a skill where warships might be provisioned and repaired. The site was favoured by Samuel Pepys, then Clerk of the Acts of the navy, for shipbuilding higher than Chatham inland. After the raid on the Medway in 1667, the older fortification was strengthened; in 1669 a Royal Navy dockyard was received in the town, where warships were stocked and repaired until its interruption in 1960.
Beginning following the construction of a pier and a stroll in the 19th century, Sheerness acquired the other attractions of a seaside resort. Industry retains its important place in the town and the Port of Sheerness is one of the United Kingdom’s leading car and fresh fabricate importers. The town is the site of one of the UK’s first co-operative societies and next of the world’s first multi-storey buildings in imitation of a rigid metal frame.