Jersey Post commemorates La Corbière Lighthouse in latest stamp release

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18 June 2024
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To commemorate 150 years since La Corbière Lighthouse was first lit, a new stamp issue which tells the story of its construction was released on 24th April by Jersey Post.

The artwork featured on the stamps has been created by Norwegian engraver Martin Mörck, whose illustrations were inspired by original plans and designs of the first working drawings of La Corbière Lighthouse. 

Above: The 5 stamps released by Jersey Post to commemorate 150 years since La Corbière Lighthouse was first lit

You can buy the 150 years of La Corbière Lighthouse: First lit 1874 at Jersey Post’s website, items on offer include a miniature sheet for £5.00, which features and illustration of the lighthouse at high tide with a ship in full sail in the foreground. The light beam depicted here is a glow-in-the-dark UV spot ink. Other items available include a first day cover, stamp set and presentation pack. 

The set has been released as part of Sepac’s Iconic Tourist Destination theme, with the £2.95 stamp bearing the Sepac logo. 

Above: The miniature sheet features the fully lit lighthouse at high tide, the light beam is a glow-in-the-dark UV spot ink

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The construction of La Corbière Lighthouse 

A guiding light for seafarers around Jersey, La Corbière Lighthouse was lit for the first time on 24th April 1874 and is situated on a tidal island on Jersey’s most extreme south-western point. In 1865 the masters of steamers and sailing vessels wrote to the piers and harbour department to petition for a lighthouse to be built as Jersey’s coast can be quite treacherous to navigate and has seen many shipwrecks. Specifications for the lighthouse were written up in 1873 by world-renowned engineer Sir John Coode and included details for the lighthouse and causeway as well as two cottages where the lighthouse keepers would be able to live. 

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The responsibility for the construction of the lighthouse laid with Imrie Bell, executive engineer for Jersey and he went on to detail the development of the lighthouse, including its interior elevation in his book Construction of La Corbière Lighthouse and St Helier’s Harbour. One of the problems encountered during construction of the lighthouse was how to lay the foundations and how to get materials from the mainland to the isolated island rock. To help with this issue, a scaffolding rig was used to help with construction. Survey work for the lighthouse was completed in 1873, with the masonry of the lighthouse and half-tide causeway finished in November of that year. Finally, 9 years after the first petition for the lighthouse was made, it was lit for the first time in April 1874. 

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Today, La Corbière Lighthouse still marks hazards for seafarers on both the south and west coasts of the island. It has also become a popular tourist attraction and is one of the most photographed landmarks in Jersey.