Cape Hermes

Name Cape Hermes
Structure 13 metre octagonal stone tower
Other Features Equipped with a radio beacon
Mains supply with one standby diesel/alternator set
Date Installed 1 May 1903 / 16 October 1
Description Situated in Port St Johns, which is a small coastal town and known as the jewel of the Wild coast the Cape Hermes lighthouse was built using granite rocks quarried from nearby. The lighthouse is an octagonal in shape, and acquired its name after the ship, HMS Hermes that undertook national surveys of the Pondoland coastal waters. It was constructed under the direction of HC Cooper.
Commissioned in May 1902 and originally nothing more than a ships mast head light hanging outside the signal station, the records of the lighthouse date back to the lighthouse commission report of 1890. The more permanent traditional lighthouse, which is what we see today, came into operation on 16 October 1904.
The Wild Coast is strewn with the remains of ships, which have been caught by monster waves or sudden storms and dashed onto the rocks.
The famed Grosvenor wreck of 1782 gained considerable interest over the years, as there were stories of great treasure aboard. She was a three-masted ship of 729 tons burden and was returning to England when she was wrecked about 43 km away from Port St Johns. Captain Sidney Turner who dived into the sea with dynamite between his teeth to blow up the rocks did the first successful salvage in 1880.
Cost of original installation: 6 191.

Light Type Automatic-Electric
Light Character One flash every three seconds
Light Range 13 sea miles
Light Power 5 000 CD
Height of focal Plane 55 metres above high water

Position 31 38 06 South, 29 33 23 East