• Daymarks
  • Fog signals
  • Lighthouse Service
  • Lighthouses
  • Lightvessels
  • Museums
  • Points of interest
  • Shore stations
Burnham lighthouse
Burnham Low Lighthouse and the top of the High Lighthouse just visible in the background

Trinity House engineer Joseph Nelson designed Burnham-on-Sea Low Lighthouse. It was built in 1832 following the construction of Burnham High Lighthouse.

The light is shown through a window at the front and has a single vertical red stripe on its seaward side, like the High light behind it, to make it visible as a daymark.

Sunset lighthouse

The wooden lighthouse is 29ft tall and mounted on nine timber legs. Originally powered by paraffin, the Low Light was inactive from 1969 until it was re-established in 1993. It was then powered by electric light, with a light shown lower down. 

On 31st December 1993, the High Light was discontinued, and the Low Light was re-established. Two schoolchildren won a competition to switch the Low light back on, along with John Brewer, Lighthouse Attendant of the High Light for 25 years. 

Burnham Lighthouse at night

On 2nd March 1897, in a severe gale and snowstorm, a Norwegian barque, SS Nornen, lost its anchorage in Lundy Island’s shelter. The wooden boat, her crew of eleven men and the ship’s dog, were swept upstream onto the mudflats and sandbanks of Brean to the north of Burnham. The local lifeboat pulled the crew and dog to safety, but the vessel foundered. Remains of the wreck can still be seen.

Burnham wreck
Remains of SS Nornen on Burnham beach

Burnham-on-Sea Low Lighthouse

  • Established: 1832
  • Height of tower: 9 metres
  • Elevation: 7 metres
  • Character: Fl W 7.5 seconds
  • Range: 12 miles
  • Engineer: Joseph Nelson