Daniel Asher Alexander (1768-1846)

(photo courtesy of James Hogg)

Daniel Alexander succeeded Samuel Wyatt as Consultant Engineer to Trinity House in 1807. His first lighthouse was the South Stack of 1809; this was followed by the Inner Farne and Heligoland in 1811 and Hurst in 1812. The nine-sided brick Harwich high light with its companion low light were built between 1818 and 1822, and these, with the circular granite Lundy tower, had cavity walls. An architectural feature devised by Daniel Alexander on Lundy Island seems unique. The station is set in an uncompromising position, at 122 m above the sea on the highest and most exposed part of the island which faces squarely into the south-west gales. Alexander, or possibly Joseph Nelson, his builder, faced the gable-end of the two-storied dwelling full into the wind. Local granite had been used for all the lighthouse building and so large were the copings used on this gable, and so heavy the kneelers at its base, that these were supported on special attached square columns. His gesture of defiant confidence was justified, as the interior is remarkably dry.