[Bell Historians] Eddystone lighthouse

Nick Bowden nickwbowden at f...
Mon Sep 6 19:14:43 BST 2004

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My Dad (Old Bristolian) still thinks there were bells in situ at Eddystone =
until at least the 1930's. He claims to have a photo in an encyclopedia wit=
h a contemporary 1930's ship sailing past said lighthouse clearly showing o=
ne of the bells. I wonder if the picture had been doctored at all, but I'll=
get him to dig it out and see if it will scan.
----- Original Message -----=20
From: David Cawley=20
To: bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com=20
Sent: Saturday, September 04, 2004 10:10 PM
Subject: Re: [Bell Historians] Eddystone lighthouse

"The Lighthouse Stevensons" is indeed a fascinating book. I bought mine a=
fter a Quarter at St Mary's Basilica, Sydney in 2000 (we rang it while the =
Pentathlon was in progress outside). It's a good read, I got through the wh=
ole thing during the flight back to England.

It is of course quite possible that the 1881 bells were sent back (and no=
t replaced) as foghorns had come in by the 1890's (a significant example be=
ing the adaption of the fiendish Diaphone stop invented by Robert Hope-Jone=
s for the organ). As can be seen from some of these TH bells now floating a=
round (no pun intended), these marine bells take some punishment from their=
external hammers and the ironwork suffers terribly - the fourteen years in=
question would have been quite long enough for both bells and ironwork ro =
suffer, as I have noted on a number of not very old TH bells which Keltek s=
ensibly did not buy.

----- Original Message -----=20
From: matthewhigby at a...=20
To: bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com=20
Sent: Saturday, September 04, 2004 7:01 PM
Subject: Re: [Bell Historians] Eddystone lighthouse

My brother gave me a surprisingly interesting book the other day - The =
Lighthouse Stevensons by Bella Bathhurst. ISBN 0 00 257006 8 (Published in =

There is a lot of information about the building of the first Eddystone=
lighthouse (Now on plymouth hoe) as well as information on the Skerryvore,=
Bell Rock (including a cross section drawing showing bells) and several ot=
hers. I am told that there is also a large bell on the breakwater lighthous=
e at Plymouth.

There are (or were) bells at Skerryvore and also Dublin Lighthouses.

There is a lot of info on the Eddystone lighthouse at: http://www.btint=


DLC writes:
I recall raising this subject earlier - but not where I raised it. Pe=
rhaps not on this site and therefore privately.=20

I wonder if the bells cast into the Croydon ones were the bells of th=
e Smeaton light - assuming it had any. The note says "some" of the metal ca=
me from Eddystone, while there was anough in the 83-cwt of metal hung in th=
e 1882 light to cast the whole Croydon chime.

Not only are there the G&B adverts, there is also a painting/engravin=
g of one of the bells being raised into position, and another of the light =
with the two bells clearly visible below the gallery. Richard Bowden drew m=
y attention to these.

The bells no longer hang there; even if they did they would sooner or=
later be superseded by electronic devices as is progressively happening wi=
th most Trinity House and Gas Accumulator Co bells. Getting them down must =
have been as difficult as putting them up - on the other hand, 2 tons is as=
nothing considering the size of some of the materials sent out to the rock=

Matthew Higby & Co Ltd,
Church Bell Engineers.
Jasmine Cottage,
The Street,
BA3 4HN.

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