The Nissen Hut.
Originally invented and built as housing for troops in WW1.
Today it has been restored and reimagined as a garden office pod.
The Perfect Shelter.
Due to its semicircular shape the corrugated iron Nissen Hut deflected shrapnel and bomb blast, making it ideal housing for troops during The Great War. It was also quick and easy to erect thanks to inventor Peter Nissen’s engineering mind. Col Nissen and Corporal Donger his draftsman, had to draw out how to pack a Nissen Hut efficiently for transport, so it would fit a standard 3 ton truck of the period. Before that the packing was often shambolic and one hut might need several trucks and was very inefficient.
01 HOW THE NISSEN HUT WAS PACKED UP FOR TRANSPORT
02 WOODEN BEARERS ARE LAID ON LEVEL GROUND
03 STEEL RIBS BOLTED TO BEARERS
04 WOODEN JOISTS SCREWED TO BEARERS SUPPORT FLOOR
05 INNER LINING OF LIGHT CORRUGATIONS FIXED
06 OUTER CORRUGATIONS FIXED AND ENDS COVERED
Courtesy of the Imperial War Museum
A design classic.
Identifying a need for portable huts to provide housing near the front line that could be moved as required in April 1916 Major Peter Norman Nissen set about designing the Nissen Hut and within a week had started to construct the first prototype and by September the Nissen Huts had gone into production. They were adapted throughout the war to suit different requirements, notably including the Hospital version.
Built for Transportation.
20ft x 60ft and 16ft x 27ft
Basic size 20ft x 48ft
16ft wide with length any multiple of 6ft
The Nissen Hut lives on.
In WW2 the Nissen Hut was used as a shelter for bombed out civilians and has been used as storage ever since. Today it can be seen in many different guises.
Just a few of the stories we have to tell about the Nissen family, from the people to the tools that have been passed down the line and inherited.
Peter Nissen, the Inventor of the Nissen Hut, was born in the USA in on the 6th August 1871. He attended Trinity College, North Carolina leaving in 1891. In 1896 he went to the mining school at Queens University Kingston. Peter Nissen was born in the USA in on the…
This is the story of Georg Hermanus Nissen’s tools and the tool chest that we have inherited. I believe that he gave his tools to his son (Peter) when he travelled to the UK. Georg himself died in 1913 at the age of 81, so he had no further use for…
Georg Hermanus Nissen was brought up in Norway in a ship building family based in Bergen. As was normal in their period, the second and later sons were obliged to emigrate as there was not enough to keep them in Norway. He was the father of Colonel Peter Norman Nissen 1871-1930,…
I used to wonder what those rooms had been used for during the war. Long after leaving the school, I discovered that the hostel was specifically built to accommodate Bevin Boys – among them David Day, who in 1993 published an account of his time there, The Bevin Boy. My…