Seafront illuminations fit for a Princess

Torbay Weekly

Torquay's new seafront festoon lighting has been switched on - marking the completion of upgrades to Princess Gardens.

The improved illuminations - which run from the Pavilion to Corbyn Head and along Princess Pier - offer more creative lighting all year-round.

The lights, switched on last Friday by Councillor Terry Manning, Worshipful Mayor of Torbay, are digitally controlled using the latest pixel control software Madrix.

As part of the upgrade, all old faulty festoon lighting systems, wiring and fittings were removed and replaced with stainless-steel wire and fittings for longevity and safety.

In addition, all lamps were replaced with LED RGB fixtures with full colour correction from Danish specialist LED manufacturer Develtron.

The new fixtures do not only increase lighting levels but reduce overall power consumption.

The new upgraded festoon lighting can emulate the previous traditional effect, but at the click of a switch, can make it more modern.

If there is an issue with any of the ‘Pixels’, the system will send a report via email informing the user of the problem and the exact location.

This technology is the first of its kind for this type of system but standard practice on large building illuminations.

Made possible following accelerated funding from the Town’s Fund for Torquay’s Town Deal and additional investment from Torbay Council which allowed for the illuminations to be replaced along Torre Abbey Sands

This is one of three projects that have been fast-tracked to help revitalise the town centre and surrounding areas.

It was announced in October 2020 that Torquay secured £21.9 million from the Towns Fund, with accelerated funding of £750,000 being received to deliver three projects at pace as part of the first phase of the Town Investment Plan.

Princess Gardens, Royal Terrace Gardens and Upton Park - opened in June -  were announced as the first projects to benefit from the funding.

The installation was completed by local company Future Technical Solutions.

Councillor Swithin Long, Cabinet member for economic regeneration, tourism and housing on Torbay Council, said: “Through the Town Investment Plan we are creating spaces that not only offer a better experience for users, but places where people enjoy spending their time.

"The recent enhancements now offer more opportunity for people to connect all year round with the harbour and seafront areas, visit different locations and offer a boost to the night-time economy.”

Vince Flower, chairman of the Town Board, said: “Each project within Torquay’s Town Investment Plan will drive forward a better experience in the town centre and surrounding area, providing a better mix of uses and creating a place where people enjoy spending their time."

Paignton seafront is next in line to receive new and enhanced illuminations, following a £50,000 commitment from Torbay Council in the 2021/22 budget

Work is already underway with the installation due to be completed in the coming weeks.