Village Link welcomed a speaker from Trinity House to talk about their work
on 7 July 2016. When Trinity House is mentioned, most of us think of
lighthouses but their work is so much more than that. Started originally in
1215 with the Guild for the Trinity , they received a Royal Charter from
Henry V111 in 1514. Guilds were established in UK ports and they were given the right to control pilotage on the River Thames and look after "decayed" seamen. They were instrumental in setting up the Royal Navy, provided ships for The Armada and raised money by charging for ballastage. The first offshore lighthouse ( Eddystone) was candle powered but this changed to wood or coal and then oil before electricity took over. Light vessels were introduced in 1732. They remained neutral and unarmed during WW1 but nevertheless lost 81 people to enemy action. 50 vessels were sunk by U boats in WW2.
By 1998, all lighthouses were fully automated and run by solar power centres are now left at Harwich, London, St Just and Swansea. Scotland and Ireland are separate. It is the largest endowed maritime charity.
Our next meeting will be on Thursday 6th October 2016 at 8pm at Rushden
Village Hall when the talk will be on A Day in the Life of an Airline Pilot.