Enfield Town FC – The move to QE II Stadium

editor

Enfield Town FC was formed in 2001 by the Enfield Supporters’ Trust after the original club Enfield FC had left their Southbury Ground in 1999. The newly formed club were admitted into the Essex Senior League for the 2001/2 season using the facilities at Brimsdown Rovers’ Goldsdown Ground. Although the club enjoyed success on the pitch progression through the Football League Pyramid was limited by the facilities at the Goldsdown Ground.

In 2008 London Borough of Enfield announced a deal allowing the club to relocate to the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium close to their old Southbury home.The track and its stadium building were opened in the Queen’s coronation year in 1953. Sebastian Coe trained at the Enfield Stadium in the 1980s and was followed by other famous athletes – Daley Thompson and Linford Christie. Despite its illustrious past the stadium and facilities fell into disrepair during the 1990’s, this was compounded by the athletics club moving to the new track at Pickets Lock.

The joint venture lead by the club and the London Borough of Enfield aimed to produce a community sports facility comprising of a high quality floodlit football pitch, modern running track and changing facilities. The project was divided into two phases. Phase 1 would see the upgrading of the running track and included providing the infrastructure (foundations and cable ducting) to support the future floodlighting system. Phase 2 would include the renovation of the existing stadium, (which is an Art Deco style, Grade 2 listed building), producing a natural grass football pitch and floodlighting system for the central football pitch.

Phase 1 was completed by middle of 2010 and officially opened by Lord Coe who said “All my preparation for the 1984 Olympic Games (when he won the Gold in the 1500m) was in this borough and on this track. The track is better now than it has ever been”. Phase 2 followed on almost immediately after the club was granted additional funding from the Football Stadium Improvement Fund. The grant allowed the club to concentrate on improving the playing surface and purchasing the floodlighting system, whilst the stadium building was renovated and funded by London Borough of Enfield.

The club employed consultant, Keith Storey (Keith Storey Light and Sound) to oversee the design and installation of the floodlighting system. The remit being that the club wanted a modern unobtrusive lighting system which could be upgraded to meet the club’s future ambitions. A four mast system was the preferred option as it gave the clear views of the game demanded by spectators, with a more professional appearance.

CU Phosco lighting where approached to tender for the floodlighting package. Neil Johnson, Sports Lighting Manager, worked closely with the club & KSLS to produce a lighting solution which would meet all of their requirements. Initially two options for a four mast system were presented. Option 1 used masts located outside the running track and Option 2 had masts located closer to the pitch inside the running track.

Option 1 used had a major drawback as the masts would be located a long way from the pitch. In order to meet obtrusive light limitations and uniformity requirements on the pitch a mounting height of 28m would be needed. Option 2 offered a much lower mounting height at 18m reducing supply and installation costs. As well as reducing the initial expenditure this, more localized option, reduced floodlight quantities and would result in 30% lower electricity bills than option 1. The club followed the advice of their consulting engineer and chose option 2.

It was now the task of CU Phosco Lighting to complete the final lighting design, manufacture and deliver a state of the art lighting system which could grow with the club. In designing the lighting system the designer has obligations to meet the minimum lighting requirements of the Football Association and European Standards as well environmental considerations detailed in the local planning guide. The minimum lighting requirements are set by the FA and European Standard EN12193 ‘Sports Lighting’. The FA require all clubs playing in the leagues below Conference North/South to have an average maintained lighting level of 180 Lux over the playing surface, with no point falling below 108 Lux to ensure good uniformity. The EN12193 ‘Sports Lighting’ states a slightly higher level of 200 Lux maintained for a Class II installation suitable for competitive matches. It was decided that the EN12193 recommendations would be followed to ensure that the club would still comply with regulations if the FA raised their minimum requirements in the future.

The environmental considerations are covered in a document produced by The Institution of Lighting Professionals(ILP) entitled ‘Guidance notes for the reduction of obtrusive light’. The guidance notes have been adopted by all planning authorities to ensure that lighting designers and installers comply with best practice. The guide covers all types of site by categorizing the environment into five zones as shown below in Table 1:-

The guide then provides maximum values of obtrusive light for each of the environmental zones, including upward waste light and spillage towards residential properties. These values are shown in Table 2 below:-

The site at Queen Elizabeth II Stadium falls into an E3 Environmental Zone, for an urban location with medium district brightness.

The lighting design produced by CU Phosco Lighting calculated lighting levels over the pitch to ensure that the minimum maintained lighting levels were achieved, as well as overspill contours to ensure that light trespass was contained within the site boundary.

Sky Glow was controlled by carefully choosing the floodlight and optics. The FL550 floodlight produced by CU Phosco Lighting uses the latest flat glass optics. The reflector produces the main beam of light at 65 degrees when the front glass is horizontal. This means that the floodlight is never tilted any more than 5 degrees resulting in upward light loss figures of less than 2% for all installations. This is truly market leading performance.

The floodlights are mounted on CU Phosco Lightings heavy duty based hinged masts which offer the club safe and cost effective maintenance as well as future proofing the system. The masts and the cabling system have been designed to carry enough floodlights to produce a lighting level of 500 lux should the club follow other non-league clubs into the professional ranks.

The installation was carried out by CU Phosco Lightings NIC EIC approved contracting department. They have the skill and experience required to translate the lighting design from computer to site. Once installed the system was tested and commissioned to ensure that all performance and environmental parameters are achieved.

The refurbishment of the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium was completed in November 2011 and was marked by the visit of a Tottenham Hotspur FC XI. The stadium now boasts modern facilities for football and athletics as well as conference and refreshment facilities. It is a great example how a group of volunteers, supporters and the local authority can come together to produce a true community facility.

CU Phosco Lighting Limited

Neil Johnson – Sports Lighting Manager

Tel: 01920 860600

Email: sports@cuphosco.co.uk

www.cuphosco.com

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