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Pilot Pier - Hartlepool, Co Durham

Lighthouse category:  harbour

Position:  54° 41' 36.2" N : 1° 11' 17.2" W

Status: active

Date:  1836

Designer:  not known

Tower height:  39 feet

Construction: square, truncated pyramidal, wooden tower with lantern and gallery.  The lantern is surmounted by a rotating radar scanner.

Colour scheme: white with two horizontal red bands on each face

Focal plane height:  43 feet

Characteristics: flash every 3 seconds.  The light is white over the entrance channel but otherwise green

Foghorn:  none

Google map view:  google map link

When I first saw this light from the landward end of the pier, I would have to say that I wasn't convinced that it was a lighthouse at all.  Rather, I formed the impression that it was a daymark that doubled as a support for the very obvious radar antenna rotating on the top.  However, not only is it indeed a lighthouse, but it is quite a venerable one at that dating, as it does, from 1836.  I'm willing to bet that the wooden cladding on the tower has been replaced quite a few times in the 175 or so years of its existence.  There seems to be some confusion about the true name of the pier on which it stands.  Originally known as The Old Pier, it was refurbished in recent years and is now known as The Pilot Pier.  The significance of the new name is lost on me as there are certainly no pilots operating from here these days, but no doubt there is some historical resonance there somewhere.  Access to the pier is completely free and there are numerous potential photographic viewpoints, including the breakwater on the Middleton side of the harbour so, in lighting terms, it should be possible to find a suitable viewpoint at more or less any time of the day. On the far side of the Tees Estuary, and just to the left of the tower in this photo can be seen the lighthouse at the end of the South Gare. 

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