Fairfield Halls is south London’s largest arts centre. First opened in 1962, it is home to a playhouse, concert hall – regularly used by the BBC, studio spaces, rehearsal rooms, restaurants, bars and business lounge.
A multi-million-pound conservation project has sympathetically upgraded the venue, returning many features from the original building, restoring it to the heart of Croydon’s cultural centre.

Light played a central role in the restoration of the foyer. The architect’s main design intent was to reflect on the history of the theatre's famous pedigree, whilst ensuring a sustainable future. What better place to start than the entrance? Gary Dettmar, TRILUX Architectural describes,

“We had two main briefs to fulfil. Firstly, from the lighting designers was to conform to today's current legislations and guidelines. Secondly, the architects wanted to replicate the original 1962 foyer lighting scheme but incorporating up- to-date technologies in both LED hardware and control protocols. A challenge we enthusiastically accepted.”

Hazel Selby, Senior Engineer Partner, Max Fordham, continues, “Our base was old black and white photos of the original foyer. TRILUX worked closely with us to develop a bespoke trough system, to match, as carefully as possible the original 60s fluorescent fittings. The trough design incorporated their LED recessed downlights and 270x1200 recessed linear fittings within sections which allowed for an economical installation.”

“Collaboration between ourselves, TRILUX, the architect, the main contractor and the electrical contractor, resulted in a stable and easy to secure fixing method. We added a diffuser to minimise shadows and ensure the fittings couldn't be seen at various vantage points within the foyer.”

Gary adds, “We modified our standard luminaires to offer a totally bespoke product, comprising specially designed light channels, which fit to the varying angles of the tapered ceiling. Each row had to be different, as they stepped up the ceiling, spanning the overall width of the foyer entrance. It was important to have no visible fixings and provide a continuous glow around the fitting and to the top of the columns. To complete the look, we used a mix of 4000K and 3000K colour temperatures. For ease and energy management, timer controls were used.”

The final lighting scheme combined with the large windows have completely transformed the interior to make it bright, welcoming and spacious.