Historic beacon of light still pointing the way

The Matthews Lighthouse at Spurn Point.
The Matthews Lighthouse at Spurn Point.
0
Have your say

Beneath a vast expanse of conquering sky a lone lighthouse stands unbowed, a man-made sentinel staring unflinchingly out towards the North Sea.

The Matthews lighthouse, beautifully photographed in this picture which is part of The Yorkshire Post calendar, has stood at Spurn Point for more than 120 years, enduring all the slings and arrows the weather gods can hurl at it.

This historic beacon, which ceased to be a working lighthouse in 1985, was built on the long, sandy spit that stretches three-and-a-half miles into the Humber Estuary from the Holderness Coast.

The lighthouse itself has recently undergone a £470,500 restoration thanks to money from the Heritage Lottery Fund. For 90 years this historic landmark, which stands 128ft tall and can be seen from 17 miles away, guided vessels safely into the Humber Estuary.

But it was not the first sailors saviour built at this spot. There have been lighthouses at Spurn Point since 1427 because of the dangerous currents and sandbanks that lie beneath the Humber’s surface.

There is little record of what Spurn’s earlier lighthouses looked like, but we do know they have been built in pairs since 1674 and at least eight have been swept away during storms.

Thomas Matthews designed the present lighthouse when the previous one was discovered to be cracking. It was completed in 1895 and today it acts as a lasting testament to the skill of the great Victorian engineers.

Technical details: Nikon D3’s, Lens Nikon 12-24mm, Aperture f/8, Shutter Speed 1/160s, ISO 1EV under 200.

The Yorkshire Post Calendar is beautifully produced in large format. Each month includes a stunning photograph taken in one of Yorkshire’s most beautiful and well loved locations with space for personal notes, it’s the ideal gift!

Phone: 0333 2070743 option 5, 9am-7pm Mon-Fri, 9am-1pm Sat. Also available at : Reception, Yorkshire Post Newspapers, 26 Whitehall Road, Leeds. LS12 1BE, Mon-Fri 9am-4pm. Prices include postage

UK £8.99, Europe £11.25, Worldwide £14.10