Letters to the Editor
Beam, 2005-2006 Volume 34-Long night on the Lanahrone
My name is Marvee Bessey and a friend of mine recently forwarded
a copy of Captain David Gillen's article, Long night on the
Lanahrone, to me. Edward Bessey, the pilot of this plane, was my
I am grateful to the Commissioners of Irish Lights and Beam for enabling me to contact Captain Gillen to thank him for rescuing my Dad.
I am a niece of the late Seán (John) Jeffers from Inishgort and I am doing some research into the Lighthouse, the Island and how the Jeffers came to be there. As per usual you never ask these questions of your Granny and Grandad when they are alive because you are either too young or you are afraid that they'll think you are being too nosy! Unfortunately I was only 15 when my Grandad (Martin Jeffers) died and didn't really think about looking into my family history then but my Mum says now "If Daddy was still alive he'd tell you it all'. I'm sure he would but it's all a bit too late for that now.
I have done some research over the years and know that the Lighthouse was built in 1827/28 (although bizarrely it is reported that the original light was there from 1806 - I can't understand how you can have a light without a lighthouse?) and that at some point Tom and Bill Jeffers were keepers in the Lighthouse.
I have acquired some ordnance survey maps from 1840 with Inishgort shown on them and got some information from the 1911 Census so this should give me quite a bit to go on. Although as always in research it throws up more questions than answers.
Really I am looking to compile a list of Lighthouse Keepers
since the Lighthouse was first built. If any of your readers have
any information that they could give me from the early years it
would be great.
36 Park Lane, Wembley, Middlesex, HA9 7RZ, UK
Extract from CIL Journal No. 4 - Page 205 - c. 15th April 1824
The following Memorial from the Marquis of Sligo,
together with the sub-joined documents were submitted to the Board,
the same being left for that purpose by the Right Honourable Denis
To the Corporation for Improving and Lighting the Ports of Ireland
The Memorial of Howe Peter, Marquis of Sligo.
That the Memorialist's Father built at his own expense and maintained at considerable costs, a small lighthouse on the island of Inishgurt, that Memorialist since has improved it considerably and maintained it also at his own private cost for many years.
That this lighthouse is of the most essential use, both to the
trade and fishing of this coast. That vessels coming from sea,
after making Clare Island light, could run in at any hour of the
night into safe anchorage either at Dornish or Inishlyre, were the
light sufficient to be caught at the same time with the Clare
That after all the expense that has been incurred by Memorialist and his Father, both in maintaining it and in making improvements in it since, the light is not adequate. That it is so small that vessels not being able to get sight of it when under Clare Island are afraid of running for the Harbour, as if they missed the entrance of the port, they would inevitably be lost.
That a lighthouse built on a larger scale would therefore be of the most essential use to this place.
That in furtherance of this object Memorialist beg leave herewith to present a memorial from the Merchants, two Revenue Officers of Westport and a letter addressed to him on the subject of Lt. Irwin of Waterguard. Memorialist therefore humbly prays that you will be pleased to cause such sufficient lighthouse to be built.
Liam Dodd at Irish Lights, Harbour Road, Dun Laoghaire is researching members of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers who served in the Boer War 1899-1901 and the Great War 1914-18. If anyone had a family member who was in this Irish Regiment and has any information on them or any other 'Dub' would they please contact Liam at 01-2715490 or 086 3926135 or at the Dun Laoghaire address. He has also set up the following website to honour the men of the regiment which was disbanded in 1922: www.royaldublinfusiliers.com
Letters for publication on any topic to do with
Irish Lights will be welcome, and should be sent to-