School of History, Classics & Archaeology

Oral history of lighthouse keeping

The School of History, Classics and Archaeology has recently completed an oral history project in partnership with the Northern Lighthouse Heritage Trust (NLHT). (Published 4 November 2014)

A large-scale fieldwork project, funded by the NLHT, was undertaken throughout 2013 recording the oral testimonies of former lighthouse keepers and their families who served with the Northern Lighthouse Board, which has responsibility for maritime Aids to Navigation in Scottish and Isle of Man waters.

The project was managed by Dr Wendy Ugolini and Professor Stana Nenadic with Erin Farley acting as the fieldworker. In total, Erin conducted almost fifty interviews from as far north as Scalloway, Shetland to as far south as Dorset.

The recorded material has been deposited in the School of Scottish Studies Archive, University of Edinburgh, for the availability of future authorised researchers.

The capture of the memories, anecdotes and experiences of former Lighthouse Keepers and their families has been a key objective of the NLHT to make sure the realities of this unique profession and lifestyle are preserved for future generations. We are delighted with both the way the project was managed and executed and the end product.

Peter MackayChairman of the Northern Lighthouse Heritage Trust