For the first time since houses were built on Gloucester Square, 180 years ago, the Garden has been decorated with Christmas Lights.
These lights represent months of planning and (100s of hours of) volunteering from the Committee, who have needed to improve and extend the Garden Electrical system (that will be used for low-level lighting next year) before installing these Festive lights.
The Garden Committee is grateful to the work of the resident volunteers and contractors:
About the Lights
The Committee have opted to install a 6m Flagpole Light Tree in the middle of the Garden, this flagpole will be removed in January and the Wishing Well refilled.
This “tree”, supplied at a very comptetitve cost from Twinkly, is able to gently animate (we tend to stick to a warm and cool white colour scheme), forming a great centerpiece to the Garden. It is less expensive and has a lower carbon foootprint than buying large potted / cut / synthetic Christmas trees, and has the added benefit of being easy to remove, collapse and store during the remainder of the year.
The rest of the lights in the Garden are low cost, 12v, energy efficient LED “warm-white” lights, set to a twinkling animation.
In total, there are 16,808 LEDs on display in the Garden.
Whilst positive feedback has been recieved from over a dozen residents, two residents have sought to query the running cost of the lights, with reference to the current energy crisis, suggesting they should only be on for a few hours in the evening.
The Garden Committee would like to note that such concerns are not substansiated by the actual consumption of these, highly efficient, modern Christmas Decorations.
In total, the Christmas Decorations draw roughly 154.8 watts an hour, i.e. 0.155kWh. The previous in-lawn spotlights, that were run year-round, drew 135 watts / 0.135kWh.
The current Energy Cap sets the price of 1kWh at 34p, meaning the lights cost a little over 5p an hour, or £1.24 day to run.
This compares favourably to common electrical equipment, and other equipment in the Garden, as summarised in the adjoining toggle-table, and comparison list at the bottom of this page.
Whilst the Garden Committee have the option to turn off parts/all of the Christmas Lights during certain hours as part of the upgraded smart system (outlined below), given the benefits of the lights (Christmas cheer, a reduction in flytipping, etc), there is currently no intention to turn them off for large swathes of the day.
As described, the current Christmas lights draw roughly 158 watts. The central tree is the largest single component, drawing 60 watts, owing to its onboard computer.
The 5 in-lawn spotlights previously used year-round, were each 27 watts, drawing 135 watts total.
For the year or two before in the in-lawn spotlights were installed, there were 5 x 50w on-tree spotlights, drawing 250 watts.
To improve asthetics and wildlife encouragement, the Garden will be moving to low-level lighting along the inner beds (between the lawn and the gravel path). These lights will only draw 72 watts.
The Garden’s irrigation system, required to maintain the hertiage plants and trees, as well as the lawn, relies on a electric pump that consumes circa 750 watts whilst in operation.
How the Committee is Improving Energy Efficiency
and Wildlife Encouragement
The Winter Electrical Improvement works, whilst facilitating this year’s Christmas Lights, are actually part of a much broader strategy to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and wildlife-sensitivity of the Garden Electrics.
Putting the Daily Consumption of the Christmas Lights (3.7kWh) In Perspective
We understand kWH’s can be hard to comprehend, so here are some alternative uses of the daily power consumption of the Gloucester Square Christmas Lights (3.7 kWh).