For some reason, I’ve long had a fascination with lighthouses and have read a number of books about them and how/why they were constructed. Most recently I’ve been reading a book by Tom Nancollas called Sea Shakenhouses – A Lighthouse History from Eddystone to Fastnet (published in 2018) – and a great read it has been too.
The fourth’ rock lighthouse’ Tom covers in his book is my local one, Perch Rock in New Brighton. ‘Built between 1827 & 1830, it is the fourth-oldest rock lighthouse to survive’. However, the others ‘have lost most of their original fittings, making Perch Rock the only lighthouse tower to retain its simple, late-Georgian interior. This rarity value is enhanced by its intactness. Unlike other lighthouses, the Perch Rock was hardly updated during its working life. Its conversion to automatic operation in the 1920s as low-key Many towers suffered from their conversion to electrical or diesel power and subsequent automation and de-manning, their nineteenth-century interiors mostly gone as a result. The fact that it was decommissioned and sealed before it could be tampered with makes this tower fascinating.’
I could go on as the story of this rock lighthouse and its relationship with New Brighton is both interesting and scandalous in equal measure. I encourage readers who want to know more to get hold of a copy of this excellent book.
Please click on the photos, which are my own, to enlarge them.