GOTHIC HOME GOES GREEN & HI-TEC
For some 200 years Hamble Cliff Lodge has stood proudly with its back to the Solent on the outskirts of Southampton, in close proximity to the mansion Hamble Cliff House, where Queen Victoria once visited. Extended and changed beyond recognition during its lifetime, its present owners, Sheena & John Quinn, decided it was time to knock it down and start again. In doing so, they have created what has become one of the largest private homes to be built in the area for many years.
Six years after the initial conception, the Quinns have now moved back into their brand new home, whose gothic-inspired exterior hides a highly technically advanced interior.
Calling on his past experience as an electrical wholesaler, owner John decided to design the electrics for the new build himself, with the help of a local architect overseeing the whole project.
“The site is unique with great views over the Solent and bounded by woodland but with a factory to its front. We wanted to move the house closer to the ocean to make better use of the views and build a modern, green, “smart” and automated home that would stand for another 200 years.
“But we didn’t want a massive central processor or spend £50,000 on a system, so we decided to opt for Scolmore Group’s Click iNELS RF system to control the complex lighting systems we had planned.”
Local electrical contractors, Hemdean Energy, were involved in the project and responsible for installing the Click iNELS RF system. “It was a big job with a mass of circuits and, despite its complexity, was actually straightforward to install – luckily we had good plans and spread sheets detailing all the circuits.
“The iNELS actuators have to be wired into the circuits they are controlling so we put them in a plastic adaptable box – metal cuts the signal – next to a consumer unit and they worked first time. I hadn’t used Click modular switches before but was impressed by the snap in action – really quick to install or to change.”
Use of the iNELS RF system has meant that a variety of scenes can be pre-set. There are 12 dimmable lighting circuits in the kitchen/dinning/family area and the iNELS system allows numerous pre-programmed scenes to appear at a single touch.
The Quinns also decided they wanted low energy LED lighting throughout the property and have primarily used lights from the Scolmore range both inside and out. Some 120 of Scolmore’s Inceptor Micro dimmable downlights have been installed, with John praising them for their great value and the fact that they come with a pre-wired driver and two bezels. “Once installed you can choose if you want to use it as a fixed down light or with an angled beam to highlight a wall or picture,” he comments.
Scolmore’s Definity range of brushed steel switches and wiring accessories were chosen as they matched the ironmongery so well. Key benefits highlighted for Definity was the breadth of range and the fact that the cover plates are click-on and require no screws, thus giving it a very clean appearance.
The owners were keen to capture the spirit of the old Hamble Cliff Lodge in the new, smart and green property and the electrical design and installation were crucial in achieving this. The low-level and mood lighting and control, work to enhance and accentuate the gothic design and the control of the lighting in the front hall gives a wow factor to the whole project when you first enter.