Currie Harbour Lighthouse

The Currie Harbour Lighthouse on King Island had its light turned off in 1989, however after much agitation and lobbying the dormant light was reignited in 1995.

History

Constructed in 1879 and first lit in 1880, the Currie Harbour is a screw-pile foundation design. The entire assembly, 312 pieces, was pre-fabricated in England by Chance Bros, and is of wrought iron and a cast iron base. The cylinder in the centre has 90 spiral steps.

  • In 1899, a 1st order revolving lens with an oil wick lamp was installed.
  • In 1923, the oil lamp was replaced by a pressure kerosene burner with an incandescent mantle.
  • In 1940, the existing 4th order lens was installed.
  • In 1941, the original light apparatus replaced by an acetylene gas burner.
  • In 1957, the light was connect to electric mains power.
  • The light continued in operation until 1989 when it was turned off.

The substitute light was sited on a steel pole some 80-100m south of the tower proper. This provided a temporary light for mariners.

The light was switched on again by the governor of Tasmania, Sir Phillip Bennet on 15 March 1995.

King Island forms a barrier to the western approach to Bass Strait, which vessels must navigate. The area between the island and Cape Otway, on the Victorian Coast, is known as the “Eye of the Needle”, and has claimed many ships and lives. King Island’s rugged coastline alone has claimed at least 60 vessels and more than 800 lives during the past 180 years.

A lighthouse was established at Cape Wickham, the north western cape of the island, in 1861.

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Blinking Billy

Blinking Billy

Blinking Billy
Blinking Billy Point Reserve, 652 Sandy Bay Rd, Sandy Bay TAS 7005, Australia

Blinking Billy

Direction

John Garrow Shoal

John Garrow Shoal

John Garrow Shoal
Blinking Billy Point Reserve, 652 Sandy Bay Rd, Sandy Bay TAS 7005, Australia

John Garrow Shoal

Direction

Derwent Lighthouse Iron Pot

Derwent Lighthouse Iron Pot

Derwent Lighthouse Iron Pot
Iron Pot, Tasmania, Australia

Derwent Lighthouse Iron Pot

Direction

Tasman Island

Tasman Island

Tasman Island
Tasman Island, Tasmania, Australia

Tasman Island

Direction

Cape Bruny

Cape Bruny

Cape Bruny
Cape Bruny Lighthouse Tours, Lighthouse Rd, South Bruny TAS 7150, Australia

Cape Bruny

Direction

Maatsuyker Island

Maatsuyker Island

Maatsuyker Island
Unnamed Road, Tasmania, Australia

Maatsuyker Island

Direction

Cape Sorell

Cape Sorell

Cape Sorell
Unnamed Road, Macquarie Heads TAS 7468, Australia

Cape Sorell

Direction

Entrance Island

Entrance Island

Entrance Island
Unnamed Road, Macquarie Heads TAS 7468, Australia

Entrance Island

Direction

Bonnet Island

Bonnet Island

Bonnet Island
Macquarie Harbour,, TAS, Australia

Bonnet Island

Direction

Bluff Hill Point

Bluff Hill Point

Bluff Hill Point
Bluff Hill Rd, Marrawah TAS 7330, Australia

Bluff Hill Point

Direction

West Point

West Point

West Point
Unnamed Road, Marrawah TAS 7330, Australia

West Point

Direction

Sandy Cape

Sandy Cape

Sandy Cape
Unnamed Road, West Coast TAS 7321, Australia

Sandy Cape

Direction

Stokes Point

Stokes Point

Stokes Point
Unnamed Road, Surprise Bay TAS 7256, Australia

Stokes Point

Direction

Currie Harbour

Currie Harbour

Currie Harbour
LOT 1 Lighthouse St, Currie TAS 7256, Australia

Currie Harbour

Direction

Cape Wickham

Cape Wickham

Cape Wickham
687 Cape Wickham Rd, Wickham TAS 7256, Australia

Cape Wickham

Direction

Councillor Island

Councillor Island

Councillor Island
Councillor Island, Tasmania, Australia

Councillor Island

Direction

Highfield Point

Highfield Point

Highfield Point
Unnamed Road, Stanley TAS 7331, Australia

Highfield Point

Direction

Highfield Point Old

Highfield Point Old

Highfield Point Old
Marine Park, 14 Wharf Rd, Stanley TAS 7331, Australia

Highfield Point Old

Direction

Rocky Cape

Rocky Cape

Rocky Cape
Rocky Cape Rd, Rocky Cape TAS 7321, Australia

Rocky Cape

Direction

Table Cape

Table Cape

Table Cape
Lighthouse Rd, Table Cape TAS 7325, Australia

Table Cape

Direction

Round Hill Point

Round Hill Point

Round Hill Point
Chasm Creek Lighthouse, 1A Bass Hwy, Chasm Creek TAS 7321, Australia

Round Hill Point

Direction

Mersey Bluff

Mersey Bluff

Mersey Bluff
39 Bluff Access Rd, Devonport TAS 7310, Australia

Mersey Bluff

Direction

Devonport Leading Lights

Devonport Leading Lights

Devonport Leading Lights
6 Victoria Parade, Devonport TAS 7310, Australia

Devonport Leading Lights

Direction

Devonport Leading Lights

Devonport Leading Lights

Devonport Leading Lights
26 Best St, Devonport TAS 7310, Australia

Devonport Leading Lights

Direction

Low Head

Low Head

Low Head
496 Low Head Rd, Low Head TAS 7253, Australia

Low Head

Direction

Middle Channel (Tamar Rear Leading Light)

Middle Channel (Tamar Rear Leading Light)

Middle Channel (Tamar Rear Leading Light)
180 Low Head Rd, Low Head TAS 7253, Australia

Middle Channel (Tamar Rear Leading Light)

Direction

Sheoak Point (Tamar Front Leading Light)

Sheoak Point (Tamar Front Leading Light)

Sheoak Point (Tamar Front Leading Light)
199 Low Head Rd, Low Head TAS 7253, Australia

Sheoak Point (Tamar Front Leading Light)

Direction

Swan Island

Swan Island

Swan Island
Unnamed Road, Tasmania, Australia

Swan Island

Direction

Goose Island

Goose Island

Goose Island
Flinders, TAS, Australia

Goose Island

Direction

Eddystone Point

Eddystone Point

Eddystone Point
Eddystone Light Station, 2986 Eddystone Point Rd, Eddystone TAS 7264, Australia

Eddystone Point

Direction

Deal Island

Deal Island

Deal Island
Unnamed Road, Tasmania 7255, Australia

Deal Island

Direction

Cape Tourville

Cape Tourville

Cape Tourville
Cape Tourville Rd, Coles Bay TAS 7215, Australia

Cape Tourville

Direction

Cape Forestier (Lemon Rock)

Cape Forestier (Lemon Rock)

Cape Forestier (Lemon Rock)
Freycinet National Park, Coles Bay Rd, Coles Bay TAS 7215, Australia

Cape Forestier (Lemon Rock)

Direction

Point Home

Point Home

Point Home
Unnamed Road, Triabunna TAS 7190, Australia

Point Home

Direction

continued from above …

Some ship’s captains mistook this for the Cape Otway Lighthouse, to the north, light and steered directly into the island as a result.

Such incidents were the Arrow in 1865, Netherby in 1866, the Lock Leven in 1871, the Anna in 1873 and Blencathra in 1875.

As a result the lighthouse was established at Currie on the western side of the island. Many reefs and rocks abound in this stretch of water. They stretch along the coast on both sides, and also extend up to 7 kilometres out to sea.

Although the light is officially known as the Currie Harbour Light, and serves as an entrance light, it primary purpose it that of a coastal light.

The only official historic building (on The Register of the National Estate) on King Island is the lighthouse keeper’s residence at Currie which is used as a local museum by the King Island Historical Society.

 Preservation

The light was reactivated in 1995 which should lead to continued maintenance from King Island Council.

Keepers

We need your help in compiling a list of keepers for this lighthouse. If you have any information then send it to keeper@lighthouses.org.au.

Please include this lighthouse’s name, the keepers full name and what years they were keepers. Also include the same information for any other lights they were on.

Technical Details

First Exhibited
Permanent Tower
CurrentTower
Architect
Status
Location
Original Optic
Current Optic
Automated
Demanned
Construction
Height
Elevation
Range
Character
Intensity
Light Source
Power Source
Operator
Custodian
Notes

  NB: Information is historical data and is not for navigational purposes.

Access

The lighthouse grounds are open all year round. The tower is open for tours.

Tours

Contact: Ondrea Richards
Telephone: 0439 705 610
Email: kingislandrambles@gmail.com
Web: www.kingislandrambles.wordpress.com  External link

Accommodation

No lighthouse accommodation is available

Museum

King Island Historical Society Museum  External link

The Museum was established in a former lighthouse keeper’s cottage in 1980. Make sure you ask for a look at
the original Cape Wickham fresnel light which returned home for the 150th anniversary of Cape Wickham in 2011. It’s simply stunning.

Links

https://www.kingisland.org.au/maritime-trails/currie-lighthouse/  External link