Groves-Raines Architects

Sumburgh Head Lighthouse & Visitor Centre


Dating from 1819 and Category ‘A'-Listed, Sumburgh Head Lighthouse was designed by the famous Scottish engineer, Robert Stevenson, and is recognised as one of the country's finest industrial heritage buildings.

The project reached completion in June 2014 and involved the conservation, repair and adaptation of the complex of lighthouse buildings to create a first class ‘destination' visitor attraction. The development includes a visitor centre focusing on the wildlife and unique history of the site, holiday and visitor accommodation and offices for the RSPB, all with improved access and parking. In addition, a new multi-purpose education building has been constructed. A ground source heat pump was installed to provide heating to the entire site and an array of solar panels contributes a significant portion of its energy requirements.

Funding for the project was provided by the RSPB, Historic Scotland Heritage Lottery Fund, Scottish Government, Wolfson Foundation and the Shetland Development Trust.

The Sumburgh Head Lighthouse project has received several awards and commendations, including:

Shetland Environmental Award 2014

Special Mention of the Jury in the Europa
Nostra Awards 2016

Commendation in the Civic Trust Awards 2015
in the Conservation category

Highly commended in the Placemaking Awards 2015
for Best Use of Heritage in Placemaking

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