Norah Head Light is an active lighthouse located at Norah Head. It is the last lighthouse of the James Barnet style to be built, and the last staffed lighthouse constructed in New South Wales.
Officially displayed for the first time in 1903, the original vapourized kerosene burner was upgraded in 1923, electrified in 1961 and automated and de-
The concrete block tower is 27.5 metres (90 ft) high, topped by a bluestone gallery. On top of the gallery is the original Chance Bros. lantern. This lantern holds the original housing of the Chance Bros. 1st order bivalve dioptric Fresnel lens. Other important structures include the chief lightkeeper's cottage and assistant keeper's duplex, and a flag house.
Calls for construction of a lighthouse at Norah Head (then "Bungaree Noragh Point") were made as early as 1861 due to many wrecks occurring in the area. A notable supporter in the end of the 19th century was local landholder Edward Hargraves from Noraville. However, these efforts were fruitless for many years. The first formal recommendation to construct the lighthouse was made by the Newcastle Marine Board, just prior to its abolition, in 1897.
The lighthouse was designed in a style similar to the style of James Barnet, by his successor Charles Assinder Harding, who also designed Cape Byron Light and Point Perpendicular Light. It is the last to be designed in this style.
Construction commenced in 1901, undertaken by day labour. Materials were brought by boat and unloaded on a wharf constructed at Cabbage Tree Harbour for that purpose. It was officially lit on 15 November 1903, two years after Cape Byron Light. The first keepers were N. H. Williams as chief keeper, with N. Hanson and S. Kells as assistant keepers.
The cost of the tower and cottages was nearly £24,000, £19,000 for the construction of the tower and £5,000 for the optical apparatus, a Chance Bros. 1st order bivalve dioptric Fresnel lens with 700 prisms.
The original light source was a vapourized kerosene burner and mantle generating a light intensity of 438,000 cd, visible for 18 nautical miles (33 km; 21 mi). The original mechanism was a grandfather clock-
On 13 April 1923 the light source was upgraded to a Ford-
On 28 March 1961 the light was electrified, with mains electricity as the power source, and an intensity of 1,000,000 cd. The drive was replaced with a 0.3 amp electric motor. At the same time the staff was cut from three lightkeepers to two.
The light was automated and de-
The current light source is a 1000 Watt 120 Volt tungsten-
The lighthouse celebrated its centenary on 15 November 2003.
Distance & direction from Sydney: 111 Klms NE
40 Bush Street, Norah Head
Tel: 1300 132 975 Website