Groves-Raines Architects

Education Centre at Sumburgh Head Lighthouse


Following extensive restoration by Groves-Raines Architects in 2014, Sumburgh Head Lighthouse was opened to the public as a world class visitor attraction, focused on Shetland’s marine nature and maritime history.

The collection of existing buildings, by their nature, turn their back on the harsh elements and huddle together as an inward looking group providing little opportunity to truly experience the place in anything but good weather. The Architect driven concept was to create a new space which would enhance the visitor’s sense of the setting by allowing the maximum view and experience of the dramatic surroundings from a warm and dry space, regardless of the weather.

Drawing inspiration from existing WWII structures on and around the site, the education centre comprises of a 180° curved glass frontage to a newly formed concrete ‘bunker’, perched on the cliff edge, providing uninterrupted panoramic views from Bressay to Fair Isle.

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