Port Erin Lighthouses

Port Erin harbour

Port Erin has two small traditional lighthouses within the harbour. The Front Range Lighthouse stands on the beach, working with a Range Light on the promenade. Raglan Pier Lighthouse is located at the end of the pier in the harbour.

In 1876 a harbour facility was attempted at Port Erin. On the southern end of the bay, a large breakwater was built with a lighthouse at the end. However, in 1881 the breakwater was destroyed during a storm.

In 1884 a buoy was placed at the end of the demolished breakwater, and a pair of leading lights was established at the bay’s rear to provide a safe passage.

The breakwater lighthouse was relocated to Alfred Pier at Port St Mary but was later washed away during a storm.

Front Range Lighthouse

The Port Erin Front Range Light which stood on the beach, was originally a square lattice tower. The Rear Range Light was mounted on a concrete pole on the promenade.

A 36-foot high octagonal lighthouse with a red band later replaced the Front Range Light in the same location, on the beach.

Port Erin Rear Range
Port Erin Rear Range Light
Photo: Thurstan Denne

A street lamp in the promenade has since replaced the Rear Range Light. It displayed two polycarbonate lamps showing fixed red lights. LED lamps have since replaced these.

Port Erin Rear Range Lighthouse
The Rear Range Light with LED lights

Both lighthouses work as leading lights guiding vessels into Port Erin Harbour.

Port Erin Front Range
Port Erin Front Range Light – the Rear Range Light and wall marking is visible behind
Port Erin
Raglan Pier

In 1912 Raglan Pier was built near the demolished breakwater. Raglan Pier Lighthouse was built at the end in 1916.

Raglan Pier Lighthouse
Raglan Pier Lighthouse – the Front Range Light on the beach is visible in the distance

St Catherine’s Church

Along the promenade, close to the Front and Rear Range Lighthouses, stands St Catherine’s Church. The church, dedicated to St Catherine of Alexandria, was built in 1880 and extended in 1894. It has a distinctive stained glass window in the design of a Catherine wheel.

The church was built following a bequest from William Milner, a locksmith who moved to Port Erin from Liverpool. The tower on Bradda Head overlooking the harbour was built as a memorial to Milner, and is said to be in the shape of a lock.

St Catherine's Church
St Catherine’s Church

The church has two bells. The smaller of the two is not used. However, the larger one was formerly used as a fog bell at Chicken Rock Lighthouse until 1909 when it was relocated.

Port Erin Front LighthouseEstablished: 1884 Discontinued: Engineer: Tower Height: 11 metres Light Character: Fixed Red Range: Fog Signal: Elevation: 10 metres Automated:
Raglan Pier LighthouseEstablished: Discontinued: Engineer: Tower Height: 7 metres Light Character: Oc G 5 s Range: Fog Signal: Elevation: 8 metres Automated: