Maryport's transformed lighthouse has been unveiled.

The work has restored what is believed to be one of the world’s oldest cast iron lighthouses.

Much of its history has been lost but it is believed it was built either in 1786 or 1846.

It has stood as an iconic landmark in the town and has been immortalised in paintings by the likes of LS Lowry and Percy Kelly.

Allerdale council’s chief executive Ian Frost welcomed guests to the reopening of the lighthouse, which has had a £50,000 makeover.

The council applied for the money from the Government’s coastal revival scheme on behalf of the Love Maryport Town Team.

Debbie Wright, then chairman of Love Maryport, said she was delighted it had now come to fruition.

“This lighthouse is so much part of Maryport. I am thrilled that it has been restored and can’t wait to see the light shining again,” she said.

The light will shine into the community instead of out to sea as it did at the height of Maryport’s shipping industry.

Children from Maryport Junior School read poems they had written and drew pictures which were made into banners. Maryport Sea Cadets, Maryport Inshore Rescue and the Maryport branch of the Coastguard also attended.

The lighthouse has been painted inside and out. Corroded steel panels have been removed and new cast iron sheeting put in its place.

Lights have also been placed around the column and a new interpretation board tells the building’s history.

The Maryport Lighthouse project was one of 15 initiatives along the British coastline to benefit from a share of £700,000 of government cash with the aim of regenerating seaside towns.

Town centre manager Toni Magean said: “It is great to see this landmark looking so good again. We want to showcase it as a visitor attraction, for those who love their maritime history, or those who simply love the coast.”