27 July 2014
Isle of Man - Point of Ayre
Point of Ayre marks the northernmost point of the Isle of Man. There are three marine warning systems here. The Point of Ayre (High) lighthouse, at an elevation of 105 feet, is the oldest on the island. Built by Robert Stevenson, of the famous family of lighthouse builders, the light (in background below) operated from 1818.
The accretion of shifting shingle - the Norse Eyrr means a gravel bank - necessitated the construction in 1888 of a second light, Point of Ayre (Low), 30 feet tall and known as The Winkie, 250 yards to seaward of the main light. The Winkie (top photograph) had to be moved a further 80 yards to seaward in 1951, but ceased operation in 2010.
The main lighthouse was automated in 1993, since when the lighthouse-keeper's house has been in private ownership. The fog signal, the twelve feet-long horns of which were supplied by Sentinel air compressors driven by Kelvin diesel engines, was taken out of service in 2005.