Also known as Perch Rock Lighthouse, New Brighton Lighthouse stands on the western foreshore of the River Mersey. The tower is close to the landmark of Fort Perch Rock, built in the 1820s to defend the Port of Liverpool.
A primitive wooden light known as a perch was first exhibited here in 1683, hence its other name Perch Rock. A perch was a wooden tripod supporting a lantern. It marked the Black Rock to the North Channel of Liverpool Bay.
Passing foreign vessels paid a fee for the maintenance of the lighthouse. However the flimsy structure was often washed away, and in February 1821 a pilot boat crashed into it.
As the Port of Liverpool expanded and the lighthouse needed constant maintenance, a stronger tower was required. As a result, a new stone lighthouse was built. Construction began in 1827, with the foundation stone laid by the Mayor of Liverpool, Thomas Littledale. The tower, designed by Mr Foster, was built of rock quarried from Anglesey.
The lighthouse was completed in 1830 and first exhibited on 1st March of that year. The lighthouse keepers lived in the upper part of the tower, and it was accessed by a ladder to the door located partway up the lighthouse.
The lighthouse originally displayed a fixed light. This changed in 1878 to a flashing light using Argand oil lamps placed behind a three-sided array of mirrors. Three bells mounted under the gallery provided a fog signal.
New Brighton Lighthouse was decommissioned in October 1973 and sold into private ownership.
The lighthouse was restored in 2001 when an LED light was installed. A special display illuminated the names of those lost at sea, including the victims of the Titanic. Since 2015 the light displays two white flashes followed by a red flash, but this is only visible from land.
It is possible to walk out to the lighthouse at low water, with care, but the lighthouse itself is not accessible.