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Page last updated at 15:07 GMT, Thursday, 23 July 2009 16:07 UK
Lighthouse a whiter shade of pink
Happisburgh Lighthouse
The lighthouse can now boast bright white and red hoops

Happisburgh Lighthouse is reopening its doors to the public after undergoing a face-lift.

More than 360 litres of masonry paint and 20kg of ready-mixed masonry filler was needed to fill the cracks in the 26m tall landmark.

"The major project this summer was re-painting," said Patrick Tuddy, chairman of the Happisburgh Lighthouse Trust.

Rain interrupted painting mid-way through the restoration when it mixed the red paint with the white.

The Norfolk landmark is the only independent lighthouse in the country.

The lighthouse is the oldest working light in East Anglia
Built in 1790, originally one of a pair - the tower is 26m tall and the lantern is 41m above sea level
The 'low light', which was discontinued in 1883, was 6m lower and the pair formed leading lights to mark safe passage around the southern end of the treacherous Happisburgh sands
Today the lighthouse is painted white with three red bands and has a light characteristic of Fl (3) W 30s (3 white flashes, repeated every 30 seconds), with a range of 18 miles

It was due to be closed in 1998, but was saved by the local community.

The lighthouse is now run by volunteers and receives no government funding. Princess Anne became the new Royal patron of the lighthouse in January 2009, to ensure it's kept in full working order for the next three years.

Despite the lack of funding, the Lighthouse Trust have rallied together to raise money for the repairs.

"We've committed quite a bit of funding this year to improve the lighthouse," said Patrick.

The repairs and repainting took approximately five weeks to complete, but they received more publicity than they expected when rain washed the red paint onto the white, turning the lighthouse pink.

Heavy rain turns lighthouse pink

"One or two people commented on what happened with the rain, but that was only a minor problem and now it's back to its red and white glory," said Patrick.

The lighthouse is open to the public from Sunday, 26 July, 2009, and every Sunday throughout August.

The lighthouse is an important navigation aid which, despite the advance of modern satellite technology, is still valued by sailors passing along the Norfolk coast.

If you want to climb to the top of the tower you must be eight years old or over.



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