Press Release provided by Rhoda Hardie PR

The first ever live performance of music and words at one of the world’s great beauty spots will take place on Saturday November 9, when award-winning writer and broadcaster Cole Moreton brings his story The Light Keeper home to Birling Gap.

This thrilling story of love, hope, faith, loss and longing is set at the Gap and in the stunning landscape around Beachy Head, Belle Tout and the Seven Sisters. Moreton will read from the book, tell the real-life stories behind it, and sing songs written to accompany the story with his acoustic band The Light Keepers, in a special sunset performance at the National Trust Cafe at Birling Gap at 5pm on the 9th.

“I have wanted to do this for so long,” says Moreton, who lives nearby in Eastbourne. “I wrote a lot of the book sitting in the cafe here or on the beach and now people will have a unique chance to experience the story in the place where so much of the action actually happens. Nothing like this has been done here before. Huge thanks to the National Trust for making it possible.”

Cole Moreton, photo by Phil Borrowes

This will be an emotional evening for other, deeply personal reasons too, he reveals. “When I was a child with asthma I was sent away from home in East London to a sanatorium in Seaford. They saved my life, but we were only allowed to see our parents once a month, and I was there for six months. I was very homesick but I have such great memories of those precious Saturday afternoons with Mum and Dad, when we went to the Gap to play on the beach and swim. It’s my favourite place in the world … and I’m delighted to say my Mum and Dad will be at this show too.”

Cole moved to the area with his own family 16 years ago. “The memories of my childhood were part of what drew me to this wonderful landscape, which in turn inspired me to write The Light Keeper.”

Reviews of this newly-published book have so far been terrific. “I loved this,” said Brighton-based Matt Haig, highly acclaimed author of Reasons To Stay Alive and Notes From A Nervous Planet. King of Sussex crime thrillers Peter James called it: “Mesmerising.” The Mail on Sunday has called it:“A richly evocative story of heartache and secrets.”

This is the first time a live performance has been staged at the Gap and it offers a unique chance to see national-acclaimed author and storyteller perform his story in the place where it was written and where it actually happens.

For the National Trust, property operations manager Stephen James says: “We are delighted that one of our locations has been so instrumental in Cole’s life that it has both helped inspire and support the writing of his new book The Light Keeper.”

Tickets are available here.

Moreton will also conduct a creative writing and writing from landscape workshop and clinic for the National Trust at Birling Gap that morning.


A young teacher called Sarah stands on the brink at Beachy Head, arms open wide as if to let the world carry her away. She’s come to the high cliffs be alone, to face the truth about her life, to work out what to do. Her lover Jack is searching, desperate to find her before it is too late. But Sarah doesn’t want to be found. Not yet. Not by him.

And someone else is seeking answers up here, where the seabirds soar – a man known only as the Keeper, living in an old lighthouse right on the cusp of a four-hundred-foot drop. He is all too aware that sometimes love takes you to the edge …

Cole Moreton writes for national newspapers and presents programmes for BBC Radio 4. He was Interviewer of the Year at the Press Awards, and his Radio 4 documentary The Boy Who Gave His Heart Away won Audio Moment of the Year.

The songs for The Light Keeper are written with the musician David Perry and performed with The Light Keepers, who include singer and drummer Bruce Pont and on this occasion singer Claire Tabraham. The music and readings are available on iTunes, Spotify and other streaming services.

For more information see or or contact Cole on [email protected] or 07710 614035.

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