Standing proudly on the Town Pier of North Queensferry in the shadows of the UNESCO World Heritage Site The Forth Bridge, sits the world's smallest working light tower, North Queensferry Light Tower.
Built in 1817 by Robert Stevenson as a key part of the Queensferry Passage across the Forth, the light tower fell into a state of decay after two centuries of time, tides and the prevailing winds played their part. North Queensferry Heritage Trust took on the restoration of the Light Tower and this important part of Scottish maritime history was carefully restored to full working order.
The light tower reopened to the public in June 2010, when HRH The Princess Royal relit the lamp 120 years after it fell into disuse.
You can visit the light tower, discover how the light-keeper kept the lamp burning and how the unique signalling system worked. You can also become part of the towers history by lighting the lamp and receiving a Certificate of Competence as an Honorary Keeper of the Light just like Molly and her mum Catherine (pictured below) who won a prize in our Year of History, Heritage & Archeaology competition to visit the Light Tower and light the lamp.
Molly and Catherine climbed the 24 stairs up to the lamp with the Duty Superintendent of Passage, as was done over 100 years ago, to discover how the light-keeper kept the lamp burning and how the unique signalling system worked. They were told about the Queensferry Passage and how the lamp kept passengers, livestock, cargo and the Royal Mail moving safely across the River Forth. After a short introductory course on lighthouse procedures and optics, Molly and Catherine got to light the lamp and brought it to "Standard Flame Height" before recieving their very own Certificate of Competence as an Honorary Keeper of the Light!
Discover more about the Light Tower, its history and opening times here. There's also a web cam you can play with and check out live views from the tower!
In the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017, we celebrate the richness of Fife's intriguing history, impressive cultural heritage and fascinating archaeology. Make sure you take part in our competition at www.welcometofife.com/HHA2017 to win a fabulous prize like Molly and Catherine.