Our Specialist story

Royal Exchange, Manchester

Lighting Design
Jonathan Rush, Partner at Hoare Lea

Lead Partner:
Jonathan Rush

Lighting a Landmark.

The Grade II Listed Royal Exchange on St Ann’s Square sits in the heart of Manchester city centre. Along with the award-winning theatre and luxury retail spaces, the building houses a prestigious office space (and just happens to be home to our Manchester office!).

Enhanced façade.

Our Lighting Design team were brought in to design a new façade lighting scheme for the building. The brief was to bring the Royal Exchange into the Manchester night-time scene, creating an easily identifiable retail and leisure destination that could still be appreciated in the evenings.

We carefully considered the building’s fabric and daytime appearance, coordinating lighting products with the architecture and finishes, and positioning them as unobtrusively as possible. These warm white light sources now enhance the Portland stone at night, giving the whole façade a coherent feel.

We gave the recesses of the imposing clock tower different optical solutions. These create patterns that match the dimensions of the tower’s details, and enhance this significant landmark for the city.

Retail arcade.

The arcade meanwhile needed to be a welcoming space. Our design of pendant luminaires increases luminance on the floors and ceilings, providing a uniform lighting pattern and helps promote a feeling of brightness within the space.

Programmable colour-changing LEDs allow different shades of white light or colour to be projected into the space’s ‘coves’, allowing for a variety of colour combinations and effects. The result is a unique, striking, and fun space that welcomes the people of Manchester to explore it further.