If there’s anything the wholesome reality series Lego Masters has taught us, it’s that, with a bit of creativity, and a lot of planning, just about anything can be built out of Lego. Some of the world’s most recognisable landmarks have been honoured in a brick build, including the Statue of Liberty, the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and — now — the Margaret River Region’s Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse.
Perth-based Chris McRae, an avid Lego builder and member of the WA Brick Society, is the brains behind the ‘Leeuwin in Lego’ build. “The idea came from my fascination with the stories of lighthouses,” he said. “I loved the idea of the isolation of lighthouse keepers and the fact that they were on the tip of the coast. I thought, “why not combine the two things that I love together? Lighthouses and Lego”.”
He chose the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse specifically for its unique characteristics. At 39m, it’s the tallest lighthouse on mainland Australia, and it sits at the point where the churning Southern and Indian Oceans meet.
The replica — which even includes the site’s cottages and a Lego Paul Sofilas, the resident lighthouse keeper — took McRae 12 months to plan and somewhere close to 15,000 pieces to build. “The result is something I’m really proud of,” he said. “When I got the opportunity to bring it down and display it on site, it was too good of an opportunity to pass up.”
McCrae’s masterpiece will be displayed at the newly reopened Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse precinct until March.
Visiting Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse
After undergoing extensive restoration works over 15 months, the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse reopened to visitors in December 2022. While bookings aren’t essential to visit the site, planning ahead and buying tickets early are recommended to avoid disappointment.
Guided tours of the lighthouse run every half hour, every day (except for public holidays), giving great insight into the 60,000-year Wadandi history of the cape, the development on the cape in the 400 years since the Dutch landed there, and the lives of the lighthouse keepers and their families. An even deeper understanding can be gained at the Interpretive Centre, housed in one of the original lighthouse keepers’ cottages.
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Lead image: Margaret River