The Principality of Sealand, commonly known as Sealand, is a micronation that claims Roughs Tower, an offshore platform in the North Sea approximately 12 kilometres (7.5 mi) off the coast of Suffolk, as its territory. Roughs Tower is a disused Maunsell Sea Fort, originally called HM Fort Roughs, built as an anti-aircraft gun platform by the British during World War II.
Since 1967, the decommissioned HM Fort Roughs has been occupied by family and associates of Paddy Roy Bates, who claim that it is an independent sovereign state. Bates seized it from a group of pirate radio broadcasters in 1967 with the intention of setting up his own station at the site. He attempted to establish Sealand as a nation state in 1975 with the writing of a national constitution and establishment of other national symbols.