Spurn Point lighthouse gets lottery renovation

View of the lighthouse from the beach
Image caption The new visitor centre is expected to open in 2015
View from the top of the lighthouse
Image caption The six-storey lighthouse was built in the 1890s and ceased operating in 1985
Aerial view of Spurn Point
Image caption Spurn Point is a peninsula stretching 3.5 miles (6km) into the Humber Estuary

A derelict lighthouse on a nature reserve in East Yorkshire is to be converted into a visitors' centre after being awarded a £470,500 lottery grant.

Spurn Point lighthouse has stood empty since it stopped operating in 1985.

It stands on a thin peninsula of land which juts 3.5 miles (6km) into the North Sea at the mouth of the Humber Estuary.

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust (YWT), which owns the site, said the lighthouse would house exhibitions and classrooms.

The six-storey lighthouse, which is a Grade II listed building, was built in the 1890s.

It was built to protect shipping using the Humber Estuary to travel to the ports of Hull and Grimsby.

Spurn Point, which is only 50m (164ft) wide at some points, is home to a variety of seabirds and other wildlife.

'Community spirit'

During both world wars the site was used as a military base with gun emplacements and other defences installed to guard against invasion.

Two former military buildings at the base of the lighthouse will be converted into a toilet block and a viewing platform.

YWT's chief executive Rob Stoneman said: "We will help more people, and a wider range of people, to participate in the conservation of Spurn's heritage, at the lighthouse and across the site, and through themed events with the help of local groups, organisations and schools.

"Spurn's lighthouse will once again become a beacon of light, celebrating the areas heritage and community spirit."

The centre is expected to open in 2015.

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