Exterior of an old Hampshire barn showing the original barn and a new glazed link
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Lighting a 15th Century Barn

We’re lucky to have the chance to work on the most magnificent buildings.  Lighting this grade II listed barn has been challenging, fun and educational in equal measure.  Towering ceilings, the listed status and a large multi-functional space make for an interesting lighting challenge.

The 15th Century Barn is effectively one enormous space and the lighting needs to be able to complement the architecture and be coherent across the space.  The dining area features a large sail to bring intimacy to mealtimes and presents a real challenge to get light onto the table

Looking down on the dining area and lit sail in a glorious old barn

Treating the beamed structure with respect

The beautiful beam structure is one feature that makes the barn such a significant building and contributes to its listed status.  While the ceiling really calls out to be lit we wanted to leave the beams as untouched as possible.

Powerful downlights on custom brackets sit on the beams providing lighting in the dining area but the light in the roof space largely comes from the ground.   High output ground recessed floor lights set around the base of beams fill the roofspace with light and bring the wonderful structure to life.

Mr & Mrs P – Clients

“Brilliant Lighting planned the project with meticulous detail and listened to what we wanted, so working with them became an exciting and creative time. The end result is spectacular and we are very pleased with the way it has turned out.”

Lighting for a modern glazed link structure

The glazed link joins the new build and the old barn.  It’s a very modern statement, needs lighting that is sympathetic to the architecture and has to work with the overall scheme when viewed from outside.

Glazed link between bedrooms and main living space of a converted barn with internal & external lighting
Detail of high output, low glare ground recessed uplight in a beamed barn

High output fittings with the glare carefully controlled

The sheer size of the barn makes it important to select fittings with sufficient output.  There are limited fixing points so both the beams and the floor offer opportunities but it’s essential to use fittings with sufficient output.

The fittings we’re using here are 1400+ lumens with a deeply recessed light source and glare guards.   These unobtrusive ground recessed floor lights do a huge amouont of the work in lighting the vast roof space of this barn.


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Brilliant Lighting delivers inspirational lighting design across the UK. You can contact us by telephone or post or email us using this form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.


Project blog posts

A series of short blog posts captured during the restoration and redevelopment of this barn.  One of the standout features of this project was the organisation and planning from our clients.  Planning early and executing well makes such a difference.

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Photography by Simon Warren

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