About the Friends

The Friends were formed by Committee in November 2014 with specific aims and objectives listed in our Constitution; these are:

  • To educate a wide audience including schools about the heritage of LV50 by whatever means.
  • Promote access by way of open days and dissemination of information relating to the preservation and national historic significance of LV50.
  • Discover and record the unknown history of LV50.

We received a small start-up grant in early 2015, which enabled us to purchase equipment to begin our many projects. One of our first projects was to form a Research Group to discover the history of LV50. This proved a daunting task as the vast majority of the records of Trinity House, the UK Lighthouse and Lightship Authority, were destroyed in a fire in WWII. However, we were not deterred and scoured archives in Northumberland, Birmingham and London as well as Newspaper Archives to uncover her hidden history. Some brave Friends have even crawled around below decks to discover what parts of the vessel remain there.

Through our research we have uncovered a compelling story of her construction, state of the art light and foghorn, service life as well as what life was like aboard. For more information on the heritage of this historic Lightship please go to our History Page .

Getting the message across at a quayside event
Getting the message across at a quayside event

We have communicated this information to the local community, schools and to the wider general public, erected information boards in the harbour, distributed leaflets, and are busy producing a historical booklet. We also engage the public through our many events on board the vessel; our Pie and Peas Suppers and musical evenings are very popular.

Musical evening on board LV50/House Yacht Tyne
Our musical evenings are very popular

Throughout the summer, including Heritage Open Days, we open the vessel to give talks and tours, providing a unique visitor experience of life aboard a Lightship, complete with darkened portholes, replica stove, hammock and sounds of the sea. Our outreach talks communicate the magic of her heritage to community groups. We have facilitated an amateur radio club to broadcast worldwide from the vessel and published articles in various magazines and newspapers.

LV50 dressed for a visit
Providing a unique visitor experience of life aboard a Lightship

You may also see us out and about, taking a stall at local events or tourist fairs. In 2018, we began our latest endeavour, a programme for school visits and can now offer workshops tailored to school curriculum.

If you would like further information on any of the above please see our News and Events page.

Thank you for reading about us. Finally, if you would like more information, wish to become a Friend of LV50 or help us in any way please get in touch by clicking here.