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Whitford Point Lighthouse

Whitford Point Lighthouse (also referred to as Whiteford Point) was built in 1865 to mark Whitford Point shoals, in the Burry estuary. Located off the northern end of the Gower peninsula, the lighthouse is the only remaining wave-swept cast-iron tower in the UK.

It replaced an earlier piled tower which was built in 1854.

The lighthouse is an unusual design, constructed of seven courses of heavy cast iron plates bolted together externally. The designer was John Bowen of Llanelli.

88 wooden piles were driven into the foundations. All work had to be undertaken at low water, so it must have proved difficult to construct.

Whitford Point Lighthouse

By 1884 the lighthouse had been strengthened after cracks appeared in some of the plates. It was further strengthened from the ground with a concrete skirt around the tower in 1885.

Two lighthouse keepers were likely employed, working two weeks at the lighthouse followed by two weeks at Llanelli Harbour Lighthouse. As there were no living quarters, other than a living room, the keepers would have accessed the lighthouse at low water from the mainland.

An external ladder on the east side provided access to the balcony where a door led into the lantern room.

Whitford Point

The lighthouse was discontinued in 1921 when Trinity House established a new beacon at Burry Holms. However, following requests from local yachtsmen, it was re-established in the 1980s. Following the removal of a solar unit, the light was removed and not replaced.

It is possible to walk out to the lighthouse at low water, but care must be taken and you should check the tides.

  • Established: 1854
  • Current tower: 1865
  • Discontinued: 1926
  • Height of tower: 13 metres
  • Engineer: John Bowen