Butt Of Lewis

The Butt of Lewis Lighthouse is situated on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. It was engineered by David Stevenson in 1862. The station’s claim to fame, according to the Guinness Book of Records, is that it is the windiest spot in the UK.

History

Little is known of the station’s early days, although the first light displayed was probably fixed rather than flashing, but this is not certain. A plaque in the lightroom indicates that the present equipment was installed in 1905, when the characteristics of the light was one flash every twenty seconds. In 1869, paraffin is known to have replaced the vegetable or fish oil hitherto used as the light source, and indeed continued in use until 1976, when it was replaced by electricity.

The Lighthouse was manned by three Keepers who lived at the station with their families. The station became the radio link for the Keepers on the isolated Flannan Islands in the early 1930’s, and continued to function as such until 1971, when the Flannans was demanned, and the light made automatic. Today, the Butt of Lewis acts as the monitoring station for the automatic light on the Flannans, North Rona and Sula Sgeir and is the radio control station for the North Minch area.

The fog signal was discontinued on 31 March 1995 and the light was automated on 30 March 1998. Today’s optic system is a Bi Form set up, consisting of a pair of 2 Tier high-powered LED marine lanterns flashing in synchronisation, giving reliability and efficiency.

The light is remotely monitored from our headquarters in Edinburgh.

 

Details

Year Established

1862

Engineer

David Stevenson

Position

Latitude   58°30.923'N
Longitude 006°15.717'W

Character

Flashing White every 5 Seconds

Elevation

52 metres

Range

21 nautical miles

Structure

Red Brick tower 37 metres high. There are 168 steps to the top of the tower.

Public Access

No

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