In a tight bend of the River Scheldt, four kilometres to the north of Antwerp city centre is Fort Sint-Filips. Alexander Farnese, the Duke of Parma, built it in 1584 along with Fort Sint-Marie during the siege of Antwerp.
With these two forts, he wanted to cut the town off from the States forts Lillo and Liefkenshoek. Between both forts, he also built his impressive floating bridge. After the fall of Antwerp, Fort Sint-Filips continued to be of great military importance, counterbalancing
Lillo and Liefkenshoek.
During the expansion of the Antwerp fort belt in the late 19th century, Sint-Filips again came into focus due to its strategic location. A new bunker fort Filip was built, with three artillery domes directed at the Scheldt. On the bank, a jetty was built to ensure the connection with Fort Sint-Marie.
The bunker fort is situated on the Scheldelaan and is outside the dyke. The desolate location and the fort which is now partially surrounded by sand now pose a challenge for the adventurous visitor. The 16th century fort only remained as an archaeological relic under the later bunker fort. The future SIGMA elevation of the Scheldt dykes will refocus attention on the important and turbulent history of this place. Because it was here in 1585 that the course of the history of Antwerp was determined.