Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff

Upgrading lamps from halogen to LED has facilitated a substantial reduction in electricity and maintenance costs and carbon emissions at Wales Millennium Centre.

Lighting Services have assisted the award winning Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff to make significant reductions of 86% in their lighting costs by switching to LED in the lobby stairways, balcony’s and corridors. With savings of around £35,000 a year has enabled them to contribute funds to their educational and outreach programmes.

Opened by The Queen in 2004 sustainability has always been at the heart of their events and activities. To illustrate this the Centre’s sustainability initiatives won the Sustainability and Environmental Impact category in the British Institute of Facilities Management Awards.

After reviewing the buildings energy performance the centres started to introduce a program of energy saving measures.

Building Conservation and Engineering Manager David Bonney commented. “It quickly became clear that the front-of house lighting was a major contributor to our energy consumption. There are 2,000 fittings in the area, typically in use for 16 hours a day, seven days a week. At the time these were using 50W halogen spotlights, resulting in power consumption of 582,500 kWh per annum at a cost of over £40,000.”

Matt Holway of Lighting Services Bristol added: “When we were contacted by Wales Millenium Centre we provided advice and guidance on the LED technology we supply and issued samples of Philips LED lamps. We then worked with the Centre in carrying out a larger pilot with 500 lamps. This was very successful and all of the 2,000 front of-house fittings have now been fitted with Philips lamps.”

As a result of switching to LED the Millennium Centre has reduced energy consumption in these areas by 81,536 kWh a year, with a running cost of £5,000. To add to this a calculated lifetime projects a lamp life of six years with current usage. There has also been a significant reduction in maintenance costs of changing countless halogen lamps with their shot lifetime. This has resulted in a return on investment in about 1 year.

“Any savings that we make on operating the building free up funds that can be used to enable us to meet our charitable activities. The savings on the lighting enabled us to send a 75 strong children’s choir to perform with the Mariinsky Opera Company and orchestra in St Petersburg, led by the world renowned artistic director Valery Gergiev. It also helped us in our work with local disadvantaged schools so the benefits go beyond the financial and environmental aspects,” David Bonney concluded.