The lighthouse on Fang Rock kept boats safe in the waters surrounding the island. In the 1900s, Reuben Whormby, Ben Travers and Vince Hawkins were the keepers of the lighthouse. One night, Hawkins saw a "fireball" - in actuality, a Rutan ship - fall from the sky.
The Fourth Doctor and Leela visited after accidentally landing on Fang Rock while trying to get to Brighton. Travers was killed by a Rutan scout. A fog covered the island and the lighthouse stopped working. In the perilous seas, a steam yacht crashed against Fang Rock, stranding Henry Palmerdale, Adelaide Lessage, James Skinsale and Harker on the island. They were conducted to the crew room and given sustenance.
The Rutan killed Reuben, Harker, Hawkins, Palmerdale, Lessage and, finally, Skinsale. The Doctor was able to construct a makeshift mortar device which he placed in the lamp gallery. Leela used it to kill the Rutan and, per her suggestion, the Doctor fitted the lighthouse with a carbon oscillator which destroyed the Rutan mothership. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock)