New Photography Book To Celebrate Trinity House’s 500th Anniversary

Light Through A Lens: An Illustrated Celebration of 500 Years of Trinity House

By Neil Jones & Paul Ridgway

Foreword by HRH The Princess Royal, Master of Trinity House

Published by Adlard Coles Nautical on 11 September 2014

Light Through A Lens spine and coverTo celebrate the 500th anniversary of Trinity House’s incorporation by Royal Charter, the Corporation has teamed up with celebrated nautical publisher Adlard Coles Nautical to create a handsome photographic book featuring 160 pages of the best photography from the Corporation’s own archive.

The fascinating images—many of which have never been seen by the public before—seek to show some of the unusual diversity of the ancient, complex and somewhat misunderstood institution, with accompanying passages to describe what happened during five eventful centuries at sea and around the coastline of England, Wales and the Channel Islands.

This photographic account of these remarkable structures dotted around the most vulnerable stretches of coastline is to be treasured by anyone who finds the haunting beam of a lighthouse at sea an immensely comforting sight, as well as walkers and families for whom a lighthouse on the landscape is a completely irresistible draw.

The book is now available from the Bloomsbury website or from various book retailers!

Light Through A Lens front cover

Light Through A Lens front cover

Light Through A Lens internal pages

Light Through A Lens internal pages

Light Through A Lens internal pages

Light Through A Lens internal pages

Enter the Trinity House 500th anniversary quiz for great prizes

Enter the Trinity House 500th anniversary quiz for great prizes

As part of its 500th anniversary celebrations, the Corporation of Trinity House is offering the chance to win a copy of the new Trinity House photography book Light Through A Lens and a Trinity House-themed print by renowned illustrator Peter Kent.

We’ll post more about the book on this blog closer to its publication on 11 September 2014. In the meantime, you can read about it on the Bloomsbury website.

To find out more, please visit the Trinity House website. Good luck!

Royal Museums Greenwich Item of the Month: John Smeaton’s ‘A Narrative of the building… of the Edystone [sic] lighthouse with stone’

Royal Museums Greenwich Item of the Month: John Smeaton’s ‘A Narrative of the building… of the Edystone [sic] lighthouse with stone’

A Narrative of the building… of the Edystone [sic] lighthouse with stone, PBB4061

“May 2014 marks the 500th anniversary of the incorporation of Trinity House and May’s item of the month describes a pioneering triumph of English lighthouse engineering.

After the timber and stone lighthouse built on the Eddystone rocks by John Rudyerd was destroyed by fire in 1755, the Eddystone proprietors, who held a lease from Trinity House, chose John Smeaton to build a replacement. Warmly recommended by the Royal Society, Smeaton had no direct experience of building lighthouses – nor did anyone else – but was an instrument maker who investigated the power of wind and water and had tested ships’ compasses and logs at sea. Above all, as his biographer says, ‘he was valued for the power and clarity of his intellect’ (A.W. Skempton (1981), John Smeaton FRS, p.11).”

The new National Maritime Museum exhibition Guiding Lights celebrates 500 years of Trinity House. Exhibition Curator Gillian Hutchinson takes a closer look at a rare book, A Narrative of the building and a description of the construction of the Edystone [sic] lighthouse with stone, by John Smeaton, Civil Engineer, F.R.S., 1791.

After reading the post, go see for yourself! Visit the National Maritime Museum’s new temporary exhibition, Guiding lights: 500 years of Trinity House and safety at sea. Admission is free and open until January 2016.

 

Smeaton's Eddystone medal

Smeaton’s Eddystone medal

Sneak Preview of ‘Light Upon The Waters’, the official Trinity House history

lutw_resizedOur official @TrinityHouse500 Twitter account has just announced a sneak online preview of Light Upon The Waters, the official history being published later this year:

Enjoy!

Trinity House 500 (@TrinityHouse500) is now on Twitter!

Trinity House 500 (@TrinityHouse500) on Twitter

If you’re looking to follow up-to-date preparations and celebrations for our 500th anniversary, then follow the new Twitter account @trinityhouse500, where you’ll find information and links to the latest developments.

First up is news about the official history book, due to be published in Autumn 2013.

A Little Light Reading

Although it’s not the easiest book to find—only 475 copies were printed—The Trinity House of Deptford Strond by C R B Barrett (Lawrence & Bullen 1893) is a fantastic illustrated biography of Trinity House and well worth a read for anyone interested in the origins, quirks and responsibilities of the corporation. The beautiful frontispiece, illustrated by the author, is presented below. [Worldcat description]

Similarly, interesting biographies were also written in-house by some of our Elder Brethren and are thankfully more readily available, notably Deputy Master Captain Joseph Cotton’s Memoir on the Origin and Incorporation of the Trinity House of Deptford Strond (1818) (Available as a PDF at Google Books) and Deputy Master Captain Sir Frederick Arrow’s The Corporation of the Trinity House: A Memoir of its Origin, History and Functions (1868). (Available as a PDF at Google Books)

Frontispiece from Barrett's The Trinity House of Deptford Strond (1893)

Frontispiece from Barrett’s The Trinity House of Deptford Strond (1893)