EXCLUSIVE: Daring Debenhams flaunts LEDs as standard in two new stores

Two new Debenhams stores just opened are flaunting low energy LED lights – and they are now seen as “standard” by the retail chain. ELN can exclusively reveal the duo […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Two new Debenhams stores just opened are flaunting low energy LED lights – and they are now seen as “standard” by the retail chain.

ELN can exclusively reveal the duo of stores, at Borehamwood and Scunthorpe, are the first to be fully fitted with LEDs.

Kitted out with energy efficient heating and cooling plant, the shops also have “enhanced” automatic Building Management Controls systems.

They are set to be a “blueprint” for future Debenhams sites, according to the retailer’s experts.

In the past LEDs were trialled at Debenhams in back rooms but the leaps in technology mean they are now incorporated into the standard specification for all its new build stores.

LEDs in action at Debenhams' new Scunthorpe department store.
LEDs in action at Debenhams’ new Scunthorpe department store.

Getting the lighting right is a crucial element for selling the latest fashion trends suggested John Gray, Director of Store Development at Debenhams.

He said: “Retail lighting plays a very important part in the customer experience. It helps to draw attention to the colours and material of our products and allows us to highlight particular offers and brands across our store.”

With around a third of a store’s typical energy use from lighting, the brand’s energy experts anticipate energy savings of 50% from the LEDs compared with conventional fluorescent lighting at Borehamwood and Scunthorpe.

Energy Manager Jaz Rabadia added: “Implementing a lighting solution that enhances the customers’ shopping experience and at the same time can help minimise our environmental impact is key to us achieving our energy and carbon reduction targets.”

The firm has working closely with manufacturer Philips to pick the right LED technology, she said: “We were able to achieve significant reductions in energy use and improved illumination levels across the store.’’

The LEDs aren’t doing the efficiency work solo though: lighting controls are in place to “maximise” energy savings, with control features such as daylight sensors on window display lighting and occupancy sensors in the back of house areas.

The sales area lighting is also linked to the intruder alarm panel and stores BMS System so the store lighting is only activated when needed, according to the store.