Clifton Cathedral


In a heritage project completed over 20 weeks, John Perkins Construction undertook a substantial £700,000 heating-and-lighting upgrade at Grade-II*-listed Clifton Cathedral.

Built in the 1970s in the Brutalist style, Clifton Cathedral is one of Bristol’s most striking buildings and home to a priceless church organ. This meant the utmost care was required during the works.

However, there was no escaping the fact that the cathedral’s existing lighting was outdated. This posed a particular problem, due to the difficulty of replacing failing lightbulbs situated at height. The cathedral’s original heating system was also failing, leaving the congregants chilly, with no central heating.

To add to the sensitivity of the project, the required refurbishment works needed to be carried out while the cathedral remained in use. This encompassed the Christmas period – the busiest time of year for the cathedral.

Clear and open communication was key to keeping everything running smoothly. John Perkins Construction worked closely with both the Clifton Diocese and architect Purcell to both safeguard the listed building and keep facilities open to the public.

The John Perkins team used strict segregation, with the cathedral kept clean and tidy at all times, and works areas carefully closed to public during weekdays. They also ensured that church services and other events remained unaffected, with temporary lighting and heating in place while the new facilities were being installed.

Following this full M&E upgrade, the cathedral now benefits from energy-efficient LED lighting, reducing both the cathedral’s energy consumption and its maintenance burden. John Perkins Construction also carried out vital plant room works, including installation of a new air handling unit, ushering in a new and effective heating system.

The result is a cathedral with the lighting to show off its stunning interiors, and the heating to keep its congregants warm year round.

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