In the dark over Wyre Light

Campaigners hoping to resore the Wyre Light off Fleetwood need to know who owns it.
Campaigners hoping to resore the Wyre Light off Fleetwood need to know who owns it.
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Who owns Wyre Light? That is the big question on the lips of lighthouse campaigners who have joined forces in their hunt to find the owner of an historic Fleetwood landmark.

The Lighthouse Keepers Association (LKA) and Fleetwood Civic Society both hope to restore Wyre Light by securing it as a Listed Building.

However, they can only do this once they find out who owns the land, which is proving a struggle.

It was believed the Duchy of Lancaster had responsibility for the first of Fleetwood’s three lighthouses, but Anne Martin, a member of the LKA, was informed the Duchy had passed the land on to the Fleetwood Local Board in 1884.

Mrs Martin said: “Before we can do anything we need to get someone to own up to owning the lighthouse.

“Until somebody says ‘we own it’ and they accept responsibilty for it, it’s going to be hard, and I don’t think they will because of the cost of repairing it.”

Fleetwood’s Wyre Light has stood off the coast of the town for 173 years, but is crumbling and is in a bad way after it was never restored following a devastating fire in 1948.

This year’s Wreck Trek, which sees thousands of walkers venture out to the lighthouse, was cancelled by organisers Fleetwood RNLI, over concerns the path they would use is unstable.

It had been feared the lack of an event would lead to people forgetting about the structure’s plight, but campaigners say they are doing all they can to raise awareness.

Mrs Martin added: “The RNLI is hoping it’s going to be back on next year but I suspect because dredging has stopped the silt has built up in a dreadful way and has created problems for walkers.

“We don’t want to let it drop because nothing will be done and it could collapse into the sea.”

Margaret Daniels, chairman of Wyre Civic Society, said: “I’m trying to get in touch with the relevant person at Wyre Council to go in and look through their archives.

“Hopefully we can have the Wreck Trek again in the future because it’s one of the ways we can show how important the lighthouse is in Fleetwood.”

A spokesman for the Duchy of Lancaster said: “We can confirm the Duchy does not own the lighthouse.

“We have in our records a conveyance of foreshore dated March 14, 1881 to The Fleetwood Local Board which includes the lighthouse.”