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Todhead Lighthouse

Lighthouse (19th Century)

Site Name Todhead Lighthouse

Classification Lighthouse (19th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Tod Head

Canmore ID 36773

Site Number NO87NE 19

NGR NO 86972 76959

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/36773

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeenshire
  • Parish Kinneff
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District Kincardine And Deeside
  • Former County Kincardineshire

Archaeology Notes

NO87NE 19 86972 76959

Todhead Lighthouse.

NMRS PLANS:

DC 9179-9196 (catalogued) with additional sheet showing Regulating Clock missing at time of upgrade (06.07.01) and item unnumbered. Original no. M/79228.

(Undated) information in NMRS.

(Name cited as Todhead Lighthouse and location as NO 869 770). Built 1897 by engineer D A Stevenson. A short circular-section tower with a triangular-paned, domed-top lantern of standard type. A wrought-iron walkway is corbelled-out below the lantern, and there are 1- and 2-storey flat-roofed keepers' cottages.

J R Hume 1977.

This lighthouse was built as one of a series of major northern lights; it was first lit in 1897 and electrified in 1978.

R W Munro 1979. It became automated in 1986 (S Krauskopf 2001).

Built 1897 by engineer D A Stevenson, Todhead Lighthouse is a short circular-section tower. A two storeyed accommodation block for keepers, and ancillary buildings, adjacent to the lightouse, are all contained within the lighthouse compound.

The compound wall and principal buildings are all built from yellow fireclay brick, much of which has been painted white, with quoins and margins painted traditional bamboo yellow. However, the courses of brick forming the top of the tower directly beneath the light itself appear to be white enamel fireclay brick.

During September 2000 Todhead Lighthouse was surveyed and visited by a RCAHMS photographic survey team. The purpose of this survey was to enhance and augment the existing holdings of the National Monuments Record Scotland.

Visited by RCAHMS (MKO), September 2000.

In 2007 RCAHMS were notified by the Northern Lighthouse Board that the lighthouse and adjacent buildings are to be disposed of by public sale. The optic system including machine with clockwork mechanism, twin motor drive bearing and 1st order dioptic lens is to be removed prior to the sale. The site was converted to electric in 1973 and automated in 1986 at which stage some alterations were carried out to the lantern mechanism and machine but the equipment is significantly as fitted in 1897. It is proposed that the equipment will be removed from site and re-assembled in a suitable location, perhaps a museum.

Information from NLB (May 2007).

Activities

Construction (1897)

Light established in 1897.

K Allardyce 1998

Modification (1988)

Automated in 1988.

K Allardyce 1998

Photographic Survey (September 2000)

Built 1897 by engineer D A Stevenson, Todhead Lighthouse is a short circular-section tower. A two storeyed accommodation block for keepers, and ancillary buildings, adjacent to the lightouse, are all contained within the lighthouse compound.

The compound wall and principal buildings are all built from yellow fireclay brick, much of which has been painted white, with quoins and margins painted traditional bamboo yellow. However, the courses of brick forming the top of the tower directly beneath the light itself appear to be white enamel fireclay brick.

During September 2000 Todhead Lighthouse was surveyed and visited by a RCAHMS photographic survey team. The purpose of this survey was to enhance and augment the existing holdings of the National Monuments Record Scotland.

Visited by RCAHMS (MKO), September 2000.

Publication Account (2013)

Established by the Northern Lighthouse Board in 1897, engineer David A Stevenson. As the light took advantage of high ground in that location, the materials hauled up 50ft cliffs, the white brick tower did not have to be especially tall to achieve an elevation above sea of 41m or 125ft (c.f. St Abbs Head, Berwickshire). It has two corbelled balconies and triangular sheets of glass to the usual NLB pattern. A foghorn has been eradicated from its platform near the cliff edge. The light was discontinued in 2007 because it only marked a way rather than a specific hazard.

Ref NLB.org.uk/lighthouselibrary

M Watson, 2013

References

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