Kings School, Ely, Cambridgeshire, UK

The new Arts Department at Kings School, Ely was designed by ORMS, who asked dpa to assist with the lighting design as they felt it to be of great importance. First of all working closely with ORMS we examined and maximised the natural light within the language of the architecture and acceptance of the planners. The external presentation of the building in the daytime with the natural light falling on its materials is reversed at night with the internally illuminated glazed openings becoming the lit elements. ORMS integrated low level lighting around the perimeter to enable people to safely navigate without great intrusion visually or significant use of energy.

The internal lighting provides excellent illumination to walls with flexible track and spot systems using high efficacy lamps. This is supported by general light through circulation areas as appropriate, again using different varieties of fluorescent and compact fluorescent sources to provide a very efficient low maintenance lighting solution with good colour rendering. The upper studios utilise two lines of T5 fluorescent lamps seamlessly joined together in an unobtrusive extrusion. This provides the general lighting to the whole area. Additional fluorescent sources are used to enhance the balcony displays, and metal halide projectors uplight the exposed timber joists to provide light to the soffit and balance the brightness of the high level day-lit slot and surrounding materials.

We were extremely pleased with the result; light is provided where required in an efficient, flexible, and well-integrated manner taking into consideration the architecture and its functions.

Client: Kings School Ely
Architect: ORMS
Photography: Kilian O’Sullivan