Acoustic plaster ceiling  in church

St Saviour’s Church

Project: St Saviour’s Church, Dollingstown

Segment: Additional areas

Country/city: Northern Ireland/United Kingdom, Dollingstown

Architect: Waddington McClure Architects

Installer: Office Works

Main contractor: Derek Faulkner Contracts Ltd

Photographer: Gordon McAvoy

Production year: 2023

Renovation of St Saviour’s Church Dollingstown

Built in 2005, St Saviour’s Church in Dollingstown, Lugan, was in need of some modification and renovation.

Nicola Waddington ARB RIBA from Waddington McClure Architects explains the brief and how it was achieved using Ecophon Fade™ Acoustic Plaster Albus along with other solutions to improve the lighting, and acoustics.

“One of the main issues was the existing suspended ceiling which was a grid system that had become uneven and discoloured with water damage. The recessed ceiling lights were inefficient, inflexible, and difficult to access. They also caused significant glare as they were angled towards the congregation within the slope of the ceiling. Once it was determined that the existing ceiling was at the end of its expected life span, we saw the opportunity to create something beautiful in its place. The new ceiling needed to have a high acoustic quality and be able to incorporate a flexible lighting system. Importantly, it had to harmonise with the existing contemporary interior and raise the quality of the worship space.

Ecophon Fade™ Acoustic Plaster Albus system was selected for the new ceiling giving a smooth contemporary appearance in keeping with the design of the existing church. The product has been used to create a dramatic design of ‘floating’ panels stepping down towards the front of the church. This meant that low energy lighting could be seamlessly incorporated in tracks along each step in the ceiling, concealing the fittings removing glare and distraction. Bluetooth control means a variety of lighting scenes can be used at different times of day or create different moods within the space. Evening services that have a small congregation can now be lit to create a special intimacy in the large worship space.

Ecophon Akusto™ wall panels in Garlic were also selected to encase the new audio-visual screens at the front of the church providing additional sound absorption.

The result is an upgraded church building with a contemporary ceiling avoiding visual clutter and distraction whilst enhancing the existing interior. But most importantly, acoustics and quality of sound has improved worship within the space.”