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Archaeology Notes

Event ID 875181

Category Descriptive Accounts

Type Archaeology Notes


NT49NE 143 48220 99003

Beacon [NAT] (accurate location not apparent).

OS (GIS) MasterMap, October 2010.

For closely-comparable structure on Halliman Skerries (off Lossiemouth, Moray Firth) at NJ 2141 7227, see NJ27SW 119.

(Location cited as NT 48220 99003). East Vows Beacon: this structure is believed to have been raised by local petition, and possibly subscription. It is noted as a 'Chair of Refuge' on the 1st edition of the OS 1:10,560 map, the cage structure on top of the legs evidently having the dual purposes of a daymark and a shelter for shipwrecked mariners.

Information from Mr S Liscoe, Professional Assistant (Archaeology), Fife Council, 12 October 2010.

This structure was built by Alan Stevenson for the Commissioners of Northern Lights. Trinity House had made an appraisal, in 1841, of the proposal to erect a beacon at the Vows and were of the opinion that it was not necessary. However the local worthies of Elie and Earlsferry then petitioned the NLB Commissioners in 1843 and again in 1846 for a beacon to be placed on the Vows rocks, but without immediate success. However upon the recommendation of Stevenson, and the NLB Commissioners, Trinity House gave their consent to a beacon being erected in December 1846

In February 1847 Stevenson landed on the rock to assess the possibility and by May of that year the foundation had been lined out and dressed into the rock and the work was apparently completed by September of that year.

The rapid construction of the beacon was expedited by using the cast iron components from another beacon that was already under construction at the foundry of the Shotts Iron Company at Leith. Total cost for the project was £483 13s 10d.

This structure appears closely comparable to that (NJ27SW 119) on Halliman Skerries, off Lossiemouth, Moray Firth. It appears that this latter beacon was also constructed by Shotts.

Information from Mr S Liscoe, Professional Assistant (Archaeology), Fife Council, 21 October 2010.

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