Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse

On the most Southern Westerly tip of Australia, where the Indian and Southern Oceans meet, stands Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse as a solitary sentinel.

It was totally manually operated until 1982 by a clockwork mechanism and  kero burner, one of the last in the world.

History

Built from 1895 to 1896 the tower and cottages are built of local limestone.

The Cape Leeuwin Light was first mooted in 1881, but took 15 years to eventuate.

Disputes raged over the best site for the lighthouse. Also, until the Kalgoorlie-Coolgardie gold rushes Western Australia was the poorest State, and with no assistance from the Eastern States, it was unable to proceed with a project of this size.

Further delays occurred when it was found the the initial test bores that showed bedrock at 2.5 metres had only found a rock shelf and it was then necessary to excavate to 6.7 metres.

continued below …

© All images are copyright of their respective photographers and are not to be used without permission.

Title Address Description
Cape Leeuwin
Cape Leeuwin, Western Australia, AustraliaGo to Cape Leeuwin
Breaksea Island
Unnamed Road, Nanarup WA 6330, AustraliaGo to Breaksea Island
Cave Point
Unnamed Road, Torndirrup WA 6330, AustraliaGo to Cave Point
Eclipse Island
The Gap Rd, Torndirrup WA 6330, AustraliaGo to Eclipse Island
Cape Naturaliste
Bunker Bay Walk Trail, Naturaliste WA 6281, AustraliaGo to Cape Naturaliste
Casuarina Point
1 Bennett Way, Bunbury WA 6230, AustraliaGo to Casuarina Point
Arthur Head
15 Captains Ln, Fremantle WA 6160, AustraliaGo to Arthur Head
South Mole
1 Fleet St, Fremantle WA 6160, AustraliaGo to South Mole
North Mole
N Mole Dr, North Fremantle WA 6159, AustraliaNorth Mole
Woodman Point
597 Cockburn Rd, Munster WA 6166, AustraliaGo to Woodman Point
Wadjemup (Rottnest)
Wadjemup Rd, Rottnest Island WA 6161, AustraliaGo to Wadjemup (Rottnest)
Bathurst Point
Lancier St, Rottnest Island WA 6161, AustraliaGo to Bathurst Point
Guilderton
5 Tank Road, Guilderton WA 6041, AustraliaGo to Guilderton
Escape Island
Escape Island, Western Australia, AustraliaGo to Escape Island
Pelsaert Island
Houtman Abrolhos WA 6530, AustraliaGo to Pelsaert Island
Point Moore
481-485 Marine Terrace, West End WA 6530, AustraliaGo to Point Moore
Bluff Point
118A Kempton St, Bluff Point WA 6530, AustraliaGo to Bluff Point
Cape Inscription
Unnamed Road, Dirk Hartog Island WA 6537, AustraliaGo to Cape Inscription
Babbage Island
13 Annear Pl, Babbage Island WA 6701, AustraliaGo to Babbage Island
Point Quobba
Unnamed Road, Macleod WA 6701, AustraliaGo to Point Quobba
Point Cloates
Cardabia-Ningaloo Rd, Ningaloo WA 6701, AustraliaGo to Point Cloates
Vlaming Head
Yardie Creek Rd, North West Cape WA 6707, AustraliaGot to Vlaming Head
Jarman Island
Reader Head Rd, Cossack WA 6720, AustraliaGo to Jarman Island
Gantheaume Point
Lurujarri Walk, Minyirr WA 6725, AustraliaGo to Gantheaume Point
Cape Bossut
Cape Bossut, Lagrange WA 6725, AustraliaGo to Cape Bossut
Cape Leveque
Broome-Cape Leveque Rd, Dampier Peninsula WA 6725, AustraliaGo to Cape Leveque
Caffarelli Island
Caffarelli Island, Western Australia, AustraliaGo to Caffarelli Island

continued from above …

The original 1895 plan included two lights. The present high white light tower and in front of it, a low red light tower. Although the foundations for this low tower were completed, the structure was never built because it was considered that a second light would cause confusion and draw ships closer to the Cape.

Almost as famous is the waterwheel and wooden flume constructed to bring fresh spring water to the lighthouse from a distance away.

It has been calcified by the minerals and salts reminiscent of a limestone area known for its huge caves.

The original light source was kerosene wick lamp, then the world’s largest, revolving in a mercury bath.

This light had an intensity of 250,000 candelas and was visible for 40km.

In 1925, the light was upgraded to vapourised kerosene with a mantle, giving a light intensity of 780,000 candelas.

In 1955, a radio beacon was installed.

The light was totally manually operated until 1982 when it was converted to electricity replacing the clockwork mechanism and kero burner, one of the last in the world. The new 1,000 watt halogen lamp increased the candelas to 1,000,000.

This light was automated in September 1992.

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 Exhibited1896
Architect
StatusActive
LocationLat: 34° 22.4900’ S Long: 115° 08.1800’ E
Current OpticChance Bros. 920 mm focal radius
AutomatedSeptember 1992
Demanned
ConstructionWhite round masonary tower with white Chance Bros. 12'0''dia. lantern with curved glazings
Height39 m
Elevation56 m
RangeNominal: 26 nm Geographical: 20 nm
CharacterFl. W. 7.5 secs
Intensity1,000,000 cd
Light Source120V, 1000W TH 3000hr
Power Source240V AC
OperatorAMSA
NotesAs at Sept 2015
  NB: Information is historical data and is not for navigational purposes.

Access

The tower is not open to the public.

Site Access

The lighthouse grounds are open all year round.

Tours

No tours are available.

Accommodation

No lighthouse accommodation is available

Museum

Detail to come.

Friends Group

There is no Friends Group

Associated Lighthouse

Detail to come.

Links

Detail to come.

Sources

  • Detail to come  External link