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Century-Old Lighthouse Wheeled Away From Eroding Coastline

A 120-year-old lighthouse on the Danish west coast, at risk of falling into the North Sea, has been safely wheeled back from the eroding cliff face.

When Rubjerg Knude was first lit in 1900, it stood 200 metres from the coastline.

But by 2019, coastal erosion had affected the cliff face so much, the 23-metre tall, 720- tonne "national treasure" was just six metres from toppling over the edge.

Authorities decided to take action.

Image: Fyretflytter via Facebook

After 10 weeks of planning, the lighthouse was lifted and shifted 70 metres inland on Tuesday afternoon with the help of rails, wheels and dozens of workers.

Hundreds of people braved the cold to watch the lengthy move from the sidelines, while more watched the live broadcast from the comfort of their loungeroom.

The operation, albeit slow with engineers only able to pull the monument 12 metres an hour, was a success.

It was also costly, the bill coming in at more than $1 million. It will be picked up by both the Danish government and the town of Hjoerring.

Image: Reuters

The lighthouse is a popular tourist destination, visited by around 250,000 people each year but no one has been allowed inside since it was closed in 1968 due to shifting sands.

Without immediate action, the lighthouse wasn't expected to live past 2023.