Our Stage Lighting is under threat! Please don’t sleepwalk into this potential nightmare and rely on others to act. Read on and then please do something positive.
Regulations are about to come into force that in essence mean that in a tad over two years time all normal theatrical lamps (bulbs to the non technical) will not be available. This effectively makes all your lights obsolete overnight. As an example at the Carver Theatre in Marple there are some 40 luminaires that use a 650 watt T26/T27 tungsten halogen lamp and they won’t be the only ones!
New rules propsed by the EU for lighting come into force in September 2020. Make no mistake, this will affect ALL theatres, amateur and professional alike. As the proposals stand there will be no difference between huge opera houses, schools, regional or national theatres, community halls or village pubs which allow performance.
Current tungsten fixtures do not meet the proposed energy-efficiency requirements, and many of the alternative LED fixtures also do not meet these requirememnts. Fixtures that do not meet the standards cannot be sold after September 2020.It will be a case of “once stocks are gone, they’re gone“.
It gets worse. There are some key manufacturers saying they do not think they will be able to make by September 2020 versions of these fixtures that will meet the new EU requirements. This is not because they can’t be bothered so to speak, but for some fixture types it is not as yet technically possible to make them Solutions to these problems have yet to be found.
We need an exemption in the regulations for our show lighting to reflect the way we use lighting equipment. They are only on for limited periods of time, never all on together and very often not at full power. Studies have shown that performance lighting on average makes up 5% or less of a theatre’s total power consumption.
The current version of the regulations has such an exemption. The new proposals do not.
Without such an exemption and no further availability of tungsten bulbs, lights that have given good service for decades will simply be consigned to the scrapheap. This is a very unpalatable and dismal scenario.
What can we all do?
Secondly, lobby our MPs and MEPs
Thirdly sign this petition
Fourthly enter into this consultation which runs until 7th May. The more responses the EU receive the better they will understand the enormity of this problem.
Fifthly circulate this lot wherever you can because it affects us all.