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Lighthouses in the spotlight

Monday 6 July 2015

The ABC Radio National program Off Track is on my regular listening list. Each week Ann Jones inter­views all sorts of ratbags and obsessives. She catches the in­tim­ate voice of her subjects, along with the sonic atmosphere of the places they inhabit, and as­sembles radio pieces that teleport the listener there. Magic.

To mark the centenary of the Commonwealth Lighthouse Service Ann Jones has made a program with a focus on the Queensland timber-framed, iron-clad towers that I am so fond of.

I got to be one of Ann’s subjects this time. I met her beside the Brisbane River at the Queensland Maritime Museum and we talked lighthouses. She wove our conversation in with the sounds of Double Island Point and the voices of Lyndon O’Grady, Jack Duvoisin, Col Gladstone, and Glenn Wiggin, and made a won­der­ful show, if I may say so.

North Reef lighthouse, the most remarkable timber and iron lighthouse, first lit in 1878.

Riveted iron plating, Cape Cleveland lighthouse, first lit in 1879.

Timber framing inside the North Reef lighthouse.

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