The beautiful red and white striped lighthouse at Beachy Head in Eastbourne, England is no longer in use. It remains at the base of the cliffs and is often photographed by those who walk over the South Downs. (If you would like to know more about the history of the lighthouses in this area, including Belle Tout which is now a luxury Bed and Breakfast, you may read this book, "The Story of the Beachy Head Lighthouse" by Rob Wassell.)
In past centuries, there are stories of people deliberating using lights to entice ships to wreck upon the coast so as to plunder the ships. (I think I first learned of this practice from a book by Daphne DuMaurier, "Jamaica Inn.") The white cliffs are easily seen in daylight in good weather, but the nights could be treacherous in storms or fog. Some inhabitants of the area would walk with lights upon the cliff edge or else attach lights to grazing livestock and the ships at sea would think that the moving lights would be another ship and therefore, the water would be safe for passage. By the time they recognized the looming land mass, it would be too late and the ships would run aground. (Of course, not all shipwrecks were caused by plunderers, but were honestly wrecked by the mariners not being able to see the shoreline.)
Jonathan Darby became the Parson of Parish of East Dean in 1706. It was his job to bury the bodies of those who had washed up on the shore. He realized that a fixed light was needed and so, incredibly and amazingly, he climbed up and dug a hole into the chalky, crumbling cliff-side and put a light there on stormy nights. (This cave was 20 feet above the high water mark.) He also created a chimney that led up from the coast and made ledges where he could also set the lights. Parson Darby died in October 26, 1726 and is buried in Friston churchyard with this engraved upon his tombstone: "He was the sailor's friend."
This is the kind of person that I admire - one who sees a great need, goes straight to work and does something about it! Shining a light, indeed!