All Souls Church, Langham Place is an esteemed landmark is one of London’s treasured buildings, with its Grade I listed status indicating its exceptional national, architectural, or historical value.

Nestled within this grandiose and evolving city, All Souls Church has stood tall and proud for two centuries, with its anniversary happening this year. All Souls Church regularly welcomes unique visitors from all around the world who are looking to immerse themselves in the rich history and culture of England.

John Nash is the esteemed original architect behind All Souls Church, a figure who significantly shaped the architectural scene in the Georgian and Regency eras of British architectural history. His legacy is vividly apparent through the numerous landmarks he designed, spanning neoclassical to picturesque styles. Nash firmly established his reputation, thanks to support from two of the most influential men of his time: the prince Regent, later known as King George IV, and James Burton, a prominent property developer.

Recently, All Souls Church was looking for a new lighting system to replace luminaires that were no longer functional. For restoring the masterpiece created by John Nash, the main objective was to light up all aspects of All Souls Church, showcasing the architecture with a unique interplay between shadows and light.

A traditional lighting scheme was used for All Souls Church, made special with the use of 70 carefully selected luminaires with a rich colour palette. This vibrant array serves as a dynamic communicator transforming the church’s ambiance to align with royal celebrations, holidays, and Christmas festivities. The infusion of colour not only revitalized the traditional aesthetics but also introduced a modern flair, breathing new life into the architectural canvas.

Each of the 70 fixtures is individually addressed, allowing for dynamic programming tailored to special events. This flexibility enables captivating effects, like spinning light around the portico or spire during New Year’s Eve celebrations. While this feature offers exciting possibilities, videos and photos showcasing its capabilities are pending.

The greatest challenge for this project was to specify a lighting product that would uniformly and effectively illuminate the 234 feet / 71 meters spire with colour. A 4° projector with special filters proved to be the perfect solution for ensuring that the church’s lofty steeple would achieve a steady and uniform illumination, overcoming the intricacies of this ambitious project.

The incorporation of dynamic colour-changing capabilities went beyond aesthetics; it was a deliberate strategy to promote the building in the context of London, serving as a beacon for the local community & harmonizing tradition with the vibrant energy of the city.

Due to the Grade 1 listing status, our design efforts prioritized preservation of the fabric by predominantly utilising the pre-existing cable routes, screw holes and fixings, complete with specially designed brackets to hold the fixtures in place. In the spirit of preservation, this approach aligns with our commitment to reversible interventions, allowing the building to be restored to its most original state if desired.

CES meticulously assessed various lighting solutions, this rigorous selection process reflects our dedication to honouring the architectural heritage while embracing the modern requirements of illumination.

In summary, the lighting design for All Souls Church not only enriches its immediate surroundings but also contributes to the broader nighttime ambiance, creating a positive and unifying impact on the area. The coordinated lighting with the BBC building & Oxford Street Christmas Lights adds a layer of cultural significance, showcasing the power of thoughtful illumination to bridge the gap between tradition and modernity in an urban setting.

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