GALLERY: Breathtaking views that inspired Sir Peter now possible at Sutton Bridge lighthouse

VISITORS can finally climb to the top of the east bank lighthouse at Sutton Bridge and bask in the uninterrupted views that so inspired the artist and conservation pioneer Sir Peter Scott more than 70 years ago.

Owners Sue and Doug Hilton bought the lighthouse in November 2010 and are steadily achieving their goal of opening a museum and visitor centre as well as restoring the landmark tower itself.

New, locally crafted steel handrails on the lighthouse stairs will allow visitors to explore beyond Sir Peter’s living room to his second floor bedroom and the lamp room during a series of open weekends next month.

“It has restored a stunning view,” Mr Hilton said. “It’s been a kind of mad but constructive whirl fitted in amongst everything else we have going on in our lives, but the lighthouse has a personality of its own and won’t be left out.”

Work to restore the large ponds is only under way because workers from Birse Engineering and Fenland Ditching were so taken by the lighthouse.

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The companies had been working on a Centrica project to install wind farm power cables nearby and are donating manpower, equipment and thousands of pounds worth of materials to the project.

“They had to pass the lighthouse every day and they fell in love with the place,” Mr Hilton said. “They insisted on helping with the lion’s share of the work to rebuild the ponds and on supplying clay for the new liner.”

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The couple are transforming Sir Peter’s garage and boathouse into a cafe and museum celebrating his work and hope to open the visitor centre next year.

From this weekend the lighthouse will be open every weekend in August from 11am to 4pm plus Bank Holiday Monday.

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