Lighthouse refresh

NEW PAINT: The Cape Northumberland Lighthouse near Port MacDonnell has received a number of upgrades. Picture: SUPPLIED

MAJOR capital works has been completed at the Cape Northumberland Lighthouse near Port MacDonnell.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) completed the $2m injection into the lighthouse in response to unique circumstances.

According to the AMSA, local birds – which were attracted by the high salt content of the stone work – excavated and consumed parts of the historic structure leading to the refurbishment.

The works included a refurbishment of the stone structure and replacement of the decayed limestone, a repaint of all internal and external surfaces of the lighthouse and ancillary building as well as a refurbishment of the balcony, lantern room and an electrical system upgrade.

McElligotts VIC was the primary contractor for the restoration works with AMSA executive director of the response division Mark Morrow highlighting the significance of the lighthouse to the local community.

“At South Australia’s southern-most point, Cape Northumberland Lighthouse forms an iconic part of the Port MacDonnell coastline,” Mr Morrow said.

“This stunning piece of South Australian history is now bird-proof and ready to be enjoyed by future generations.

“AMSA would like to thank McElligotts VIC Pty Ltd for their hard work restoring Cape Northumberland Lighthouse, in time for Christmas.”

Mr Morrow also expressed confidence in the effectiveness of the newly applied paint coatings to deter future bird-related damage, ensuring the longevity of the historical landmark.

He also emphasised the AMSA’s commitment to maintaining the safety of Australia’s aids to navigation network through in-house technical expertise and specialist contractors.

“Australia’s aids to navigation network has stood for over a century, evolving and expanding with the economic development of Australia and in response to advances in technological innovation, and growth in maritime trade and activity,” he said. 

“AMSA has been the custodian of this network for the last 33 years, safeguarding the lives of seafarers and our precious seas and coastlines. 

“Together with our state and territory partners, we have ensured the maintenance, modernisation, and growth of this network through our work – today, it stands at more than 22,000 aids to navigation, of which about 450 are directly managed by AMSA.” 

Works on Cape Northumberland Lighthouse began in February 2023 and were completed before the end of the year.