Orfordness Light House

We have just completed a detailed survey of this striking Grade II listed light house. Constructed in 1792 by Lord Braybrooke the light house appears as an incredibly solid structure – unfortunately its existence is being threatened by coastal erosion and Trinity House have reluctantly agreed that nature should be left to take its course. A thorough record of the structure for posterity was thus crucial.

We established a survey network using GPS, laser scanned the interior and exterior and carried out a high resolution photographic survey using a Hasselbad medium format digital camera. Due to the difficult access (which involves a boat trip) we only had two days in which to complete the site work – laser scanning was thus the ideal tool due to its speed. Scanning the light house has also highlighted the engineering elegance of its construction – a circular building, tapering to its summit, with tapering wall thickness. This would have been extremely challenging to record with traditional survey techniques.

We have now produced record drawings of the light house (plans, sections and elevations) and ancillary structures, but the data collected using the scanner could be used in the future to create a 3D model or inform any reconstructions.