Souter Lighthouse


Souter Lighthouse is a special place all year round and was the first lighthouse in the world designed and built to be powered by electricity. Now a popular National Trust attraction in the North East, Souter Lighthouse opened in 1871 and guided sailors for over 100 years. Although no longer used to warn ships off rocks, Souter remains an iconic beacon, hooped in red and white and standing proud on the South Shields coastline midway between the Tyne and the Wear.

The Leas is a two and a half mile stretch of magnesian limestone cliffs, wave-cut foreshore and coastal grassland. The cliffs and rock stacks of Marsden Bay are home to nesting Kittiwakes, Fulmar, Cormorants, Shags and Guillemots.

Breathe in the bracing North Sea air and climb all 76 steps to the top of Souter Lighthouse. To the north stretches The Leas, with its wildflower meadows dotted with orchids. To the south is Whitburn Coastal Park, cared for by National Trust's rangers and a great for wildlife spotting. The Engine Room and Keeper's Cottage give a flavour of life in a working lighthouse, while displays and exhibitions tell local stories. 

Opening Times

Lighthouse (1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020)

* Open weekends in November and December 11am - 4pm (subject to restrictions for events)



Guide Prices

Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
Adult£7.20 per ticket type
Child£3.60 per ticket type
Family£18.00 per ticket type
Family one adult£10.80 per person per day
Group Adult (minimum group size 15)£6.50 per person per day
Group Child (minimum group size 15)£3.25 per person per day

Special rates for pre-booked groups. CALL 0191 5290909.

Map & Directions

Road Directions

On the A183 (Coast Road) at Whitburn. 2 miles south of South Shields, 3 miles north of Sunderland.

Public Transport Directions

Nearest metro station is South Shields. E1 bus runs from South Shields bus station and stops at the lighthouse gates. E1 also passes Sunderland bus station and the lighthouse on its Sunderland to South Shields route.

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  • Guide Dogs Permitted
  • Parking Areas for Disabled Visitors
  • Ramp / Level Access - No disabled access to tower, CCTV camera allows visitors to see the view from the top. Level access to foghorn field.
  • Toilets for Disabled Visitors


  • On-Site café/restaurant - Tea-room serving local dishes and home-baked cakes.
  • Picnic Site

Parking & Transport

  • Coach Parking Onsite
  • On site parking
  • Parking (free)

Payment Methods

  • American Express accepted
  • Delta accepted
  • Groups Accepted - Groups of 10+ must book.
  • Maestro accepted
  • MasterCard accepted
  • Max group size - 100
  • Min group size - 10
  • Solo accepted
  • Special group rates - 2006: Adult £3.50 Child £2.00 2007: Adult £3.90 Child £2.20
  • Sterling Travellers Cheques accepted
  • Visa accepted

Provider Facilities

  • Conference facilities
  • Dogs Accepted - Guide dogs only in lighthouse.
  • Printed Material in Foreign Languages
  • Toilets

Provider Features

  • Indoor Attraction
  • Outdoor Attraction

Target Markets

  • Family Fun
  • Marketed Towards Children
  • Marketed Towards Families
  • Marketed Towards Senior Citizens
  • Marketed Towards Students / Youth

Tours and Demonstrations

  • Demonstrations Given - Foghorn demonstrations usually every Sunday when open
  • Educational Visits Accepted - 1 meeting room available
  • Guided Tours Available for Groups
  • Guided Tours Available for Individuals


  • Visit England Code of Practice 2011

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