Monday, 16 May 2016

The Old Light, Lundy Island

This is the second postcard I received from the Lundy Island. I wrote about the first one here. I did want to post about this one as well. I don't think I could ever have too many lighthouse postcards. :D

 Foundations for a lighthouse on Lundy were laid in 1787, but the first lighthouse (now known as the Old Light) was not built until Trinity House obtained a 999-year lease in 1819. The 30 m granite tower, on the summit of Chapel Hill, was designed by Daniel Asher Alexander, and built by Joseph Nelson at a cost of £36,000. Because the site, Beacon Hill, is 143 m above sea level, the highest base for a lighthouse in Britain, the light was often obscured by fog. To counter this problem, the Fog Signal Battery was built about 1861.

 The lighthouse had two lights; the lower a fixed white light and the upper a quick flashing white light, showing every 60 seconds. However, this quick revolution gave the impression it was a fixed light with no flashes detectable. This may have contributed to the grounding, at Cefn Sidan, of the La Jeune Emma, bound from Martinique to Cherbourg in 1828. 13 of the 19 on board drowned, including Adeline Coquelin, the 12-year-old niece of Napoleon Bonaparte's divorced wife Joséphine de Beauharnais.

 Owing to the ongoing complaints about the difficulty of sighting the light in fog, the lighthouse was abandoned in 1897 when the North and South Lundy lighthouses were built. The Old Light and the associated keepers' houses are kept open by the Landmark Trust.

1 comment:

Ana said...

I love the cancellations! So neat!!