Copper Point Lighthouse


51°30.250' North 09°32.063 West

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Height of Tower:

Height of Light MHWS:

16 metres


Q (3) W 10s.


8 nautical miles

Radar Beacon:


At the Board meeting on 31st May 1860 a letter was received from Lord Bandon enclosing a memorial with many signatures praying for a conspicuous beacon on the east end of Long Island.

During June the Inspecting Committee visited the district off Schull and agreed with the memorialist and went further, stating that as it was a well frequented harbour of refuge, both entrances should be marked. Trinity House were informed and in July they requested a drawing showing buoys and beacons to mark the Long Island channel.

The following month Capt. Roberts reported that there should be a 25 foot beacon on Goat Island, a 45 foot beacon on Long Island (Copper Point) and two buoys to mark the Amelia Rock and Cush Spit.

Trinity House gave their statutory approval early in 1861 followed by the Board of Trade. During April 1861 the buoys had been placed and a Notice to Mariners was ordered to be published.

Plans of the beacons were submitted in July 1861 and tenders for constructing the beacons were considered a year later, July 1862. Mr Vickery's tender for £195 - Copper Point, and £190 - Goat Island was accepted but as his sureties were not satisfactory, the Board selected Mr Limerick's tender for £537 Copper Point and £592 Goat Island. During the building of the beacons the contractor became insolvent so his brother took over. By July 1864 the third and last payment was made on the completed Copper Point beacon and Goat Island was completed in September.

The Inspecting Committee on Tour in 1972 recommended that a light be erected on Copper Point Beacon and that the Cork County Council be requested to erect leading lights at Schull. The latter had originally been looked for by local fishermen as far back as March 1955 and by the Schull Parish Guild of the Muintir na Tire in 1959.

The Board approved statutory sanction for the Schull Harbour Board on 20th September 1974 to erect leading lights and by November 1975 Copper Point was ready with a new landing, gas bottle house, and access ladder up the side of the beacon to the 300mm acetylene lantern. Difficulty was experienced by the Cork County Council in acquiring suitable sites for the leading lights but by April 1977 the Council reported that all was well, Messrs. Barretts of Dublin were to complete the installation and the lights should be operational by 1st June.

Originally approval had been given for Copper Point's light to be flashing white every 2.5 seconds but in order to comply with the IALA Buoyage System the light would have a character of quick flash (3) every 10 seconds, the tower would be painted black, yellow, black, and have an East Cardinal topmark. The painting and topmark would not be provided until 1980.

The Schull Harbour Leading Lights and Copper Point quick flashing light were established on 1st June 1977.

In the light of experience and in view of the background the Inspector of Lights and Marine Superintendent recommended in February 1981 that Copper Point be designated as a Lighthouse instead of an East Cardinal mark and retain its white colour. The Board approved.

Tags : lighthouse , Copper