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Victorian Church of Scotland church with a cruciform layout and complex interior roof.

Involvement: As part of a major project which involved interior re-decoration and refurbishment as well as works to the external stonework, we were commissioned to devise an interior re-lighting scheme.

The existing lighting was out‑dated, expensive to run and maintain, and did not provide for the current patterns of worship and other events, so it was agreed that new lighting should be installed throughout.

One major problem was that the wide sanctuary had been lit from the sides only, using floodlights at rather shallow angles, causing glare and exaggerated shadowing.  The solution was to install powerful long life LED spotlights on the roof beams above to provide general downlighting, and to supplement these with further smaller spotlights on each side of the sanctuary to illuminate the roof itself.  A similar solution was used to illuminate the north and south transepts and their roofs.  This approach also benefited those in the balconies at the back of the sanctuary and in each of the transepts as these areas had previously been lit only by light reflected from the roof.

The crossing between the transepts at the front of the sanctuary is one of the most important areas as this is used both during worship and for musical events.  In addition to the general lighting, adjustable LED spotlights on tracks were installed at the front corners of the transepts and focused to light the central crossing and front of the chancel.

The chancel was lit by further overhead LED spotlights and side mounted uplights.

While most of the new lighting is controlled by switches, the track lighting for worship and ‘performance’ use is dimmable so it can be adjusted as required.

In addition to the primary lighting, a number of compact emergency spotlights were installed discreetly at high level.

Photos © Paul Covell Consultants