Lighthouse repainting date

Annemarie Field and Martin Wellings on the lifeboat out at Beachy Head Lighthouse
Annemarie Field and Martin Wellings on the lifeboat out at Beachy Head Lighthouse

A date has been set for Beachy Head Lighthouse to be repainted in September after campaigners raised thousands of pounds for a facelift.

Contractors will spend three weeks staying in the iconic landmark and repainting the famous red and white stripes from mid-September.

Trinity House, which owns the lighthouse, this week revealed the news to campaigners who launched a public fundraising appeal to help pay for the work to be carried out that work will begin later in the summer.

Shirley Moth, one of the founder members of the Keep the Stripes group, said, “This is absolutely terrific news and we are all so very excited.

“The people of Eastbourne gave so generously to this appeal to keep our lovely lighthouse its traditional red and white and we are pleased to have finally have a date for the work to begin.”

It was two years ago that Trinity House said it could no longer justify the cost of repainting the lighthouse and said it would have to return to its natural granite colour.

There was a public outcry and the Keep the Stripes group joined forces with Eastbourne Rotary AM and the Eastbourne Herald and the fundraising appeal was launched.

Within weeks people began pledging money, sponsored events were held, a Lighthouse Challenge Walk saw 250 people walking out to the lighthouse from Holywell, and street collections were held in Eastbourne town centre. Eastbourne Borough Council kickstarted the appeal with a £10,000 donation and others followed including a £2,000 boost from the Hospitality Association.

Comedian Eddie Izzard donated £2,000 to the appeal and it attracted support from across the world and a number of other celebrities.

Behind the scenes, Brewers, the Eastbourne decorating merchants, liaised with Crown/Hempel Paints which offered to donate the gallons of red and white paint needed for the refurbishment.

The repainting is expected to take around three to four weeks to complete.