Superb views and champagne

The lighthouse is a landmark synonymous with Folkestone.  At the end of the restored Harbour Arm, the lighthouse hosts a champagne bar tucked into its base. In fine weather, tables and chairs are spread across the plinth outside. From this tranquil spot jutting out into the Channel and surrounded by water, discerning drinkers enjoy superb views across the harbour, out to sea towards France and along the coast to the chalk cliffs.

Inside the lighthouse, the middle floor has been replaced with a laser-cut mesh.  Looking up you can see the workings of the lamp, whose light filters down, illuminating the internal space.

weather is a third

‘Weather is a third to place and time’ – the inscription on the front of the tower, is a ‘detached sentence’ from the work of the late Scottish artist/poet Ian Hamilton Finlay.  It expresses the vital importance of the weather to those who live by and work on the sea.  And how the weather is intangibly linked to our experience of a place and time; something keenly felt in this exposed setting on the end of the Harbour Arm. It was painted onto the lighthouse for the 2014 Folkestone Triennial.

Many enjoy the Champagne Bar during the summer when porpoises swim around the end of the Harbour Arm and accompany your evening.  The team that run the Lighthouse Champagne Bar have also taken over the renovated waiting rooms at Platform 4.  Open all year round, these allow for more space than the exclusive bar.  However, there’s something about being stowed away that makes a visit here exhilarating.

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