Grace Darling's lighthouse reopens to the public

Longstone Lighthouse.
Longstone Lighthouse.

The former home of one of Britain's most famous heroines has reopened to the public and now features improved displays and interactive features for all the family.

Longstone Lighthouse, on the Farne Islands, is synonymous with the story of Grace Darling, who, along with her father William, rowed out into storm conditions to save nine victims of the foundering steamer Forfarshire in 1838.

Grace Darling.

Grace Darling.

Now, following the successful re-engineering of the lighthouse, it has been reopened to the public. Much of the design of the upgraded visitor centre areas are given over to telling the story of Grace and her father William, of the rescue and their life at the lighthouse; the Darling family were the first to live in the lighthouse after it was built by Trinity House in 1826.

The visitor centre also looks at the history of Trinity House and brings visitors of all ages up to date on what the maritime charity and General Lighthouse Authority is doing today to carry on the work it began in 1514.

Visitors can view Grace's tiny bedroom from where she spotted nine survivors desperately clinging to the rocks. Despite a raging storm, the Darlings launched the lighthouse boat and rescued the survivors, caring for them in the lighthouse for two days until the storm subsided.

In putting together the new and improved displays, Trinity House was assisted in part by the team at the RNLI Grace Darling Museum in nearby Bamburgh, to whom Trinity House is very grateful; it is hoped that the two attractions will be the perfect complement to each other.

Inside the visitor centre

Inside the visitor centre

Inside the visitor centre

Inside the visitor centre