Lighthouse Story

“Lion’s Head Restoration by High School Students”

In 1903, the first light was established at the end of the Lion’s Head harbour dock. A square frame tower was added in 1911 and, less than a year later, was destroyed by stormy weather and replaced. A November storm in 1913 pushed the lighthouse onto the beach south of the harbour. It was recovered, repaired and restored to its original location.

 Fire caused more damage to the lighthouse in 1933 and it was again repaired. It survived peacefully until 1969 when the Canadian Coast Guard dismantled the attractive structure and left a nondescript metal post with a flashing red signal light in its place.

The void left by the lighthouse led a group of five high school students, under the guidance of their Project Design teacher, to build a replica of the dismantled lighthouse. After cutting through a lot of government red tape and raising approximately $4500 to fund the project, the students’ project of a 30′ white clapboard lighthouse sat proudly on the shoreline in the spring of 1983. Harold Forbes and the Rotary Club were instrumental in getting the lighthouse rebuild. The design for the lighthouse came from the original plans for the original lighthouse.

Unfortunately, it was not a functional lighthouse and did not replace the flashing red signal light which was still used as the official navigational aid.

Then, in the spring of 2000, a severe storm so badly bent the metal pole holding the red light, the electrical wiring broke. The wiring could be expensively repaired or the lighthouse could be replaced. The Canadian Coast Guard returned to remove the flashing red light and replaced it with the student-built replica, installing it in the place where the original lighthouse had once so proudly stood.
The Lion’s Head Lighthouse was back in business, guiding boats safely into the harbour.

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