The Port of Leith is one of the oldest in the UK. Originally a series of quays bordered the Water of Leith. However, the port has expanded significantly since that time.
From the 19th century, an enclosed dock system developed. John Rennie was the engineer for Leith Dock development. The East Dock was built between 1800 – 1806 and the West Dock between 1810 – 1817.
The East pier, followed by the west pier and breakwater were built between 1826 – 1829. These piers were later extended.
Between 1936 and 1942 the western harbour was created by the construction of two breakwaters.
Leith West Breakwater is located on the western side of the Port of Leith opposite Ocean Terminal. The lighthouse was decommissioned in 2008 and has been heavily vandalised.
Both the West and East Breakwater lighthouses are visible from Lighthouse Park, Newhaven.