Seems like an age since I was last on the trail of lighthouses and even longer since I bagged a new one. I had reason last Friday to visit the Strokestown Poetry Festival and decided to make a little detour on my way there up to Rosses Point to see the four lighthouses up in that neck of the woods. I was fortunate with the weather!
This little beauty is the Lower Rosses light, standing about two hundred yards off a completely deserted beach. To find it, take the road to Rosses Point and, about two miles in, turn right. It is signposted for Clegg. Follow that road about six hundred yards and you come to a t-junction where you turn left. Keep going on that road. When you come to a sharp left turn, you have gone too far. Turn around and come back about 100 yards to the next lane on the left hand side, leading down to the beach.
There is space for parking at the bottom and a sign that says cars aren’t allowed on the beach without a licence. Walk left up the beach along the track – the sea and Ben Bulben are on your right but no sign of the lighthouse. Walk about ten minutes up the beach and then follow any one of the myriad tracks that lead leftwards to the sea on the other side of the promontory. The lighthouse is pretty unmissable!
Lower Rosses light is an active lighthouse and celebrated its centenary in 2008. It guides boats through the Needles Channel. As you can see from the photographs, it consists of a white box on wooden staves and appears to be in pretty good condition.
From the vantage point on the beach, you have a full spectacular view of the iconic Ben Bulben (above) and Lissadell House, of Yeats and Maude Gonne and Gore-Booth fame (below)