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Gateshead Civic Centre, Gateshead

  • Gateshead Civic Centre
  • Gateshead Civic Centre 2
  • Lamp efficacy

    Lamp efficacy

    Ensuring the lamp efficiently converts electricity into light (lm/W).

  • Ballast classification

    Ballast classification

    Controlling the electricity supply to the lamp (Energy Efficiency Index).

  • Luminaire distribution

    Luminaire distribution

    Controlling light emission using optics which bend and shape the light to the correct location.

  • System efficacy

    System efficacy

    Combining optical and thermal control within the luminaire (luminaire lm/W).

  • Presence/absence detection

    Presence/absence detection

    Providing lighting only when it’s needed.

  • Daylight detection

    Daylight detection

    Reducing waste light during daylight hours.

  • Constant illuminance

    Constant illuminance

    Producing the correct lighting levels for the duration of the maintenance period.

  • Task-scene setting

    Task-scene setting

    Allowing the user to set scenes and adapt the lighting to different tasks.

  • Timed off

    Timed off

    Automatic cut-off to turn all lights off during unoccupied hours.

  • Task lighting

    Task lighting

    Lighting task areas with the correct amount of light.

  • Zoning of lighting

    Zoning of lighting

    Zoning lighting in accordance to occupancy patterns or window location.

  • Maintenance schedule

    Maintenance schedule

    Tailoring maintenance schedules in accordance to product age, performance and environment.

  • Waste light

    Waste light

    Eliminating waste light which does not hit the intended target.

  • Reflectance


    Taking advantage of light which is reflected from the surface within the space.

  • Visible smart metering

    Visible smart metering

    Enabling results of actions to be quickly seen as increased or decreased energy use to encourage responsible energy consumption.

Better light for a third the cost

Gateshead Council in North East England has a lighting scheme in the Civic Centre offices which is an example of how modern lighting and energy management techniques have been combined to produce a superior working environment with a 68% saving in energy costs.

The Council recognised the need for a major lighting replacement programme, but wanted to improve lighting for productivity and morale. It began its lighting replacement programme this summer with the aim of swapping more than 4,000 office lighting units with more modern, and more energy-efficient, units.


The existing lighting, which dates from when the Civic Centre was built in the 1980’s, uses groups of four 40W fluorescent U-tubes, but these are inefficient by modern standards and are becoming difficult and expensive to source and maintain.

They are now being replaced with custom-designed luminaires using four 14W T16 "daylight” lamps, dimmable electronic ballasts and built-in lighting controls. The harmonious, glare-free lighting system, imperative for pc use, has a good CRF for visibility of task detail.


Thorn worked closely with Gateshead Council to design the purpose-made units and infill panels, which are a perfect fit with the building’s coffered ceiling, allowing replacements to be fitted quickly, from below, and with minimum disruption to employees.

Furthermore, each new luminaire incorporates a double pole rocker switch to isolate the ballast, thus speeding up safety tests and inspections. The luminaire, based on the Cinqueline SR model, includes a Sensa 3 lighting control head centrally mounted in the louvre. This combined infra-red PIR detector / photocell responds to daylight and presence/absence. Furthermore, instead of being sent to landfill, the old light fittings are being sent for recycling.


The luminaire optics blend upward and downward light to provide perfectly balanced illumination on all room surfaces. New "Daylight” lamps are employed to give a colour appearance (6500K), which mimics natural daylight.