A gothic challenge: Exeter Cathedral

Exeter Cathedral is located within the heart of the city of Exeter, one of the most visited places within the West Country. The building is one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in the country featuring the longest uninterrupted stretch of decorated vaulting in the world. In addition to the regular services held at the site the Cathedral has been providing education facilities for schools for more than 25 years. These facilities have been situated in two rooms off the cloisters within the Cathedral, however, thanks to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), the upper floor of the cloisters will be transformed into a dedicated learning space, providing modern learning facilities whilst retaining the historic legacy of the building.

The Installation

Apollo fire detectors are already in place protecting this unique piece of the UK’s history thanks to equipment supplied and commissioned by Southampton based Technical Alarm Systems (TAS). Part of the project the company worked on included connecting the Cathedral’s library to the main fire system. TAS was using Apollo’s XPander technology which communicates via radio signals, removing the need for any unsightly wiring and invasive drilling and making it an ideal detection solution for architecturally sensitive buildings. 

The last phase of the work involved installing equipment in the new education rooms based in the Cathedral’s cloister area. Using the Apollo XP95 range which are networked onto the existing system, TAS has customised the equipment to blend into the surroundings (which include stone and wooden fixtures) to maintain the aesthetics of the rooms without being obtrusive.

The Final Verdict

TAS Managing Director, Stan Brooke, comments:

We have been working on this project at the Cathedral for the last four years and Apollo was the natural choice for us. We’ve worked with them for more than 25 years and as such we know we can trust the equipment. In particular, its wireless XPander range was essential for the work undertaken in the library due to the architecturally sensitive nature of the ceiling. We’ve used Apollo time and time again and have always been happy with the quality of detection its products deliver.