UCL Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering


Online STORMLAMP workshop: Monitoring and Modelling- maritime structures under environmental loading

13 May 2020, 1:30 pm–4:00 pm

An aerial image of a lighthouse and helipad on a small, rocky outcrop, surrounded by crashing waves.

This online workshop marks the end of the EPSRC-funded STORMLAMP (STructural behaviour Of Rock Mounted Lighthouses At the Mercy of imPulsive waves) research project, a collaboration between UCL, Plymouth University and the University of Exeter. Involving engaging presentations on project findings, lighthouse research and other relevant areas from academics, heritage professionals and industry stakeholders, the workshop will also include discussion on future directions for related structural engineering research.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Eve Allen


Wilkins Building, UCL Main Campus
Gower Street

The afternoon will involve engaging presentations on lighthouse research and other relevant areas from academics, heritage professionals and industry stakeholders. There will also be discussions on future directions for related research.

The workshop will be held via Zoom and livestreamed on YouTube, with details sent out to participants registered via Eventbrite.

Wednesday 13th May 2020, 13:30 – 16:00 (BST).
13:30 – 14:00 will be a soft start, to chat and resolve any connection issues. Talks will begin at 14:00.

Professor Alison Raby (STORMLAMP Project PI, University of Plymouth) 
> Introduction to STORMLAMP
Tom Nancollas (Building conservationist and author of Seashaken Houses: A Lighthouse History from Eddystone to Fastnet)
> Tom will speak on his experiences of research, writing and publishing his book Seashaken Houses
Professor Dina D’Ayala (University College London)
> Crests and Throughs: the survival of Victorian lighthouses to extreme wave impact 
The talk will provide an overview of the evolution of lighthouse design from earlier examples in the 17th and 18th century to the iconic and enduring solution reached in the 19th century, which has become the standard of construction for rock mounted lighthouses affected by extreme wave loading.
Rob Dorey (Trinity House)
> Presentation TBC
William Allsop (William Allsop Consulting, formerly Technical Director for Maritime Structures at HR Wallingford. Current PhD candidate at University of Edinburgh) 
> Predicting safety of (old) vertical walls – the development of understanding and prediction methods
Professor Paul Taylor (Oceans Graduate School, University of Western Australia)
> Towers without rocks - wave loads on offshore wind turbines
For waves hitting offshore wind turbine columns, a simple description is given for the main load distributed up the height of the immersed structure. For breaking waves, an extra ‘slam’ occurs high up. Both are discussed. 
Michel Cousquer (Cerema)
> Scientific community to rescue La Jument and l'Ile Vierge lighhouses

Key areas for discussion: 
-Avenues for future research and commencing an interdisciplinary proposal? 
-Implications for other heritage structures on the coast? 
-What socio-economic aspects didn’t we address in STORMLAMP?

STORMLAMP is a comprehensive EPSRC-funded project focusing on the structural response of rock-mounted lighthouses to wave loading. The four year project commenced in May 2016, and is a unique collaboration between the University of Plymouth, the University of Exeter and UCL. It has worked closely with the UK and Irish General Lighthouse Authorities (Trinity House, Irish Lights and the Northern Lighthouse Board), and other industry partners (AECOM, HR Wallingford, Atkins and the Environment Agency).
The project has entailed:
•    fieldwork to characterise structural behaviour of the lighthouses and associated long-term monitoring of their response to being impacted by waves;
•    experimental testing to characterise the wave impacts in the Plymouth COAST Laboratory Ocean Basin alongside CFD modelling;
•    detailed structural assessment of historic lighthouses modelled following an in-depth study of original 19th century drawings.

Follow @stormlamp_edu on Twitter for the latest updates.

About the Speakers

Tom Nancollas

Buildings conservationist and author

Born in Gloucester in 1988, Tom Nancollas is a writer and building conservationist based in London. After university, he joined English Heritage to work on church repair grants before moving on to the City of London and its historic townscape. Of Cornish ancestry, Tom maintained a love of seascapes during his work in the capital and became fascinated with offshore rock lighthouses, finding in them a new way of looking at buildings, heritage and, unexpectedly, family.

More about Tom Nancollas

Prof Paul Taylor

Chair of Ocean Engineering at University of Western Australia

More about Prof Paul Taylor

Dr William Allsop

Industry Specialist

Prof Dina D'Ayala

Professor of Structural Engineering at UCL

Dina D'Ayala
Prof D’Ayala is head of Civil Engineering within the UCL Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering department. She is also Co-Director of the Earthquake and People Interaction Centre, UCL EPICentre. More about Prof Dina D'Ayala

Michel Cousquer


Rob Dorey

Director of Operations at Trinity House

Prof Alison Raby

STORMLAMP Project PI at University of Plymouth