The Chaine Memorial Tower is a cylindrical stone lighthouse situated on the north Antrim coast, at the west side entrance way to Larne Lough. The tower was built in 1888 and is a replica of an Irish round tower with its characteristic conical roof. The tower was named after James Chaine, a North Antrim politician who developed strong trading connections Larne and Stranraer in Scotland, was pivotal in the development of the harbour and provided investment into the Larne and Ballymena Railway. He died in 1885 and the ‘Memorial Committee for Chaine’ set about garnering support for the building of this lighthouse. Initially they sought the assistance of the ‘Commissioners of Irish Lights’ to build and maintain the tower but they were refused and the committee set about building the tower without a light using contributions made by locals. In 1896, eight years after the towers completion, it was suggested a light should be added as this would aid navigation around ‘the Hunter Rock’, a substantial hazard 5 miles off shore. The ‘Commissioners of Irish Lights’ took over the tower in 1899 and added an oil powered light.
The Chaine Memorial Tower is a beautifully situated and charming structure, the drive along the North Antrim Coast to get to it is certainly one of the most picturesque drives on the island of Ireland.
GPS: 54.85447, -5.79792