• Overstrand Life

Saturday 27th August 2022 - Happisburgh Lighthouse and Visitors from Germany

The lighthouse at Happisburgh is open to visitors each Sunday, during the main season. You need to book in advance, which we did, if you wish to take advantage of a tour to the top. We arrived in the village last Sunday with plenty of time to spare before our 10 a.m. tour and were soon joined at the lighthouse by others. We were led up the first ninety-six steps by our guide before stopping on a platform. Here our guide explained, amongst other interesting facts, that Trinity House wanted to close the lighthouse and how, after fundraising and an act of Parliament, Happisburgh Lighthouse is now the only independently run lighthouse in Great Britain, as well as the oldest working light in East Anglia. More information can be found on their website. I found the last sixteen steps to the top a bit of a challenge, akin to a tight turning ladder. Once we were all up in the light area we had clear views out to sea and along the coastline; the inland view was masked, preventing the light from illuminating the countryside at night. I wasn’t relishing the descent down the first sixteen steps but I held back and with only two others to follow me down, I took my time and it really wasn’t as hairy as I had imagined. The visit was tinged with a little sadness, as we remembered our first visit to the village when our sons when young. Then the cliff top was lined with small bungalow type properties. Now due to coastal erosion, they have all either dropped over the edge or been demolished ahead of collapse.


It was a pleasure on Tuesday afternoon, to meet visitors to the village, Claudia and Susanne, from Germany who were staying at The Pleasaunce. Their first visit was some twenty years or so ago and they have been returning, if not every year, ever since. Claudia follows my blog and contacted me ahead of this year’s visit suggesting we met, which of course we were delighted to do. We met at the Cliff Top Café and sat in the garden, chatting about this and that. Claudia had read in my blogs about our litter picks and gave me a purse she had made out of a recycled milk tetra pack. I have photographed the purse and included these in today’s blog. Who would have thought you could make such a useful item out of what is basically rubbish; a very novel idea. When we had finished our drinks, we left Claudia and Susanne to enjoy the last days of their holiday before their return today, to Germany and their families.