THE OWNER of Beachy Head Lighthouse says it will work with the community to keep the tower’s iconic red and white stripes.
Trinity House, the lighthouse authority, said this week that while it cannot afford the £45,000 cost of repainting the red and white stripes, it would support any fundraising campaign asking people in the town to donate towards painting the tower.
Hundreds of people and numerous organisations have pledged their support for the Keep Beachy Head Lighthouse’s Stripes and campaigners are now in talks with Trinity House over the next step.
A major fundraising campaign looks set to be launched next weekend.
The campaign will be run by the Eastbourne Herald, the Facebook group Keep the Beachy Head Lighthouse’s Stripes! and the Rotary Am Eastbourne Club.
All the money raised will be handed over to Trinity House which will then pay for specialist contractors to carry out the repainting work.
A previous plan to involve the various organisations and businesses which offered services and advice free of charge has been shelved because of health and safety issues and the specifications set by Trinity House.
Since Trinity House first admitted it could not justify the expenditure on repainting and the tower would have to return to its natural granite grey colour, support has been phenomenal for the campaign.
Shirley Moth, from the Facebook group, said, “The lighthouse with its red and white stripes is a symbol of Eastbourne and to let it fade to grey is not an option.
“Having had a very positive telephone conversation with Trinity House, which has been so very supportive, we look forward to working with them in saving the stripes.”
Annemarie Field, chief reporter at the Eastbourne Herald, said, “Next week we should be in a position to launch the fundraising campaign and we are really hoping the town and community will get behind it so we can raise the money needed to keep the lighthouse stripes.”
Martin Wellings from Rotary Am Eastbourne said, “We are in the process of setting up an account specifically for money to help re-paint the lighthouse.”