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List Entry Summary

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.


List entry Number: 1218168



The building may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.


District: Isle of Wight

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Chale

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: II

Date first listed: 22-Nov-1993

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 392680

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.



SZ47NE ST CATHERINE'S HILL 1353-0/5/81 Tower of St Catherine's Oratory


Former lighthouse, now Ancient Monument. Early C14. Built as a penance by the local landowner Walter de Godeton for disposing of the cargo of Church wine belonging to the monastery of Lives in Picardy, when the Saint Marie was wrecked on Atherfield Ledge in the Parish of Shorwell in 1314. The tower was built as a lighthouse to prevent further wrecks and there was originally an oratory chapel with a monk whose job was to trim the light and say masses for those lost at sea. After the Reformation the church fell into ruins and had disappeared by the C18, but buttresses were added to the tower then to keep it standing as a seamark. Restored by P G Stone in 1891 and by the then Ministry of Works in 1950. Built of ashlar. 4 storeys, octagonal without and square within with 4 buttresses and a pyramidal stone roof, domed on the inside. Pointed doorways on ground and first floors which originally communicated with the Priest's dwelling and the Chapel respectively, and loop lights on ground, first and second floors. The top storey has 8 windows splayed outwards to emit light from the brazier which formed the beacon. Stairs and floors now missing. A rare survival of a medieval lighthouse. Locally nicknamed "the Pepper Pot " because of its shape and its conjunction with the remains of the C18 lighthouse to the south east in the adjoining Parish of Niton which is known as "the Salt Cellar". (see item ) Scheduled Ancient Monument. (V.C.H.: 235).

Listing NGR: SZ4936477278

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Doubleday, AH, The Victoria History of the County of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, (1912), 235

National Grid Reference: SZ 49364 77278


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End of official listing