The Barry Island Western Shelter is a Grade II listed building in Barry, Vale of Glamorgan. Constructed in 1923 as part of Barry Island’s development as a seaside resort, the open shelter is designed in Classical style. A tall single storey concrete structure, the shelter spans the seafront promenade. It boasts nine bays divided by paired Tuscan columns. An extension to the rear of the shelter houses are the resort’s amusement arcades.
The land where the shelter sits was gifted to the Barry Urban District Council in 1909 by Lord Windsor of Friars Point House. The council drew up plans to develop the island primarily as a seaside resort aimed at those working in the industrial areas of South Wales. While the First World War delayed this, by the 1920s the improvements were made and the island quickly became a popular tourist spot.
In 2018 the Vale of Glamorgan Council appointed Simon Fenoulhet to develop a new lighting design for the building. LITE Ltd were brought into the project to specify the solutions and technologies to realise the design, and the LITE team worked closely with Simon to fulfil his vision. The installation was completed by Floodlighting. The project team also collaborated with artist Tom Goddard on a public engagement project.
The £45k project has delivered a scheme where the lighting makes a feature of the building’s curved colonnade, and brings it to life each evening with a range of lighting patterns using Color Kinetics ColorBurst Compact RGB luminaires with a special ‘letterbox’ lens. The lighting show uses a spectrum of colour that moves from one end of the shelter to the other, depending on pedestrian movement at either end. It also features a two colour pattern that moves across the 55m façade. The control system is currently being updated to a Pharos controller to allow for 4G remote access.
The new and improved building was launched with a parade led by a local Samba band, and included entertainment from former Butlins’ redcoats who used to work on the island. Fans of Gavin and Stacey may also recognise the Barry Island shelter from the 2019 Christmas special of the popular and much-loved TV show.