West Lothian has one of the best school estates in Scotland, thanks to ongoing investment throughout the area. It has recently added a new £1.5 million state-of-the-art Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) centre next to the Blackridge primary school to its portfolio.


What’s extra special about this new building is that it is a modern, purpose-built Passivhaus standard nursery. Passivhaus buildings are specially designed to provide users with enhanced thermal comfort using virtually no energy for heating or cooling – this is the first nursery of its kind for the region and only the second non-domestic Passivhaus building in Scotland.


Following the Passivhaus concept and to keep carbon emissions low, the lighting was required to be low energy while providing optimum comfort for teaching staff and learners alike. Secondly, the client wanted to create a welcoming environment to facilitate a learning atmosphere.


A broad range of the Thorn Lighting family of luminaires was selected to light the complete building from the continuous suspended IQ Waves in the main nursery space, Omega Pro 2 in the offices and kitchen, Chalice in the toilets and corridors to R2L2 in the external car park.


Lighting can influence the effectiveness of the learning setting, and IQ Wave was the ideal choice. As the first point of contact for children and parents, the lobby should be warm, motivating, and inviting. The brief was to make them stand out from the rest of the nursery.


To achieve this, the team took a different direction and designed a suspended rectangular arrangement of the elegant Thorn Equaline, a flexible and modular system. The Equaline configuration delivers 1,760 lumens per metre in a bright white light (4000K). The effect is a stunning statement piece that emits a welcoming and stimulating light.

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