Sunderland AFC's Beacon of Light

J & J Carter have been appointed by Tolent Construction to design, manufacture and install a 4000m2 PVC tensile fabric roof for Sunderland AFC’s Beacon of Light, welcoming 6,000 people through its doors each week.

Having previously worked with Tolent Construction at The Sands Resort in Scarborough, our tensile fabric architecture expertise is required to successfully complete the Beacon of Light project. 

The Beacon, designed by Faulkner Brown Architects, will stand six storeys high and occupy 12 acres of land – providing a vibrant and inspiring place to encourage children, young people and adults to gain skills and qualifications. 

Its four unique zones focus on introducing younger people to the world of work, health and wellbeing, sport and play and education.  In addition, the Beacon will house sports halls, football pitches, flexible informal learning spaces and education suites.

The Beacon is the first of its kind in the UK with the aim to help tackle social and educational issues in the wider area.

“Our plans have been designed to complement and support plans to provide sustainable and vibrant learning, skills and health facilities to help achieve the City’s Economic Master plan and vision of an attractive and accessible Sunderland.”

-    Sir Bob Murray, Chairman of the Foundation of Light


The Beacon of Light in Sunderland won the RICS Project of the Year 2019, North East Award. RICS judges said the Beacon of Light has successfully delivered on its goal to involve, encourage, inspire and motivate. They praised the project team – FaulknerBrowns, Foundation of Light, Identity Consult and Tolent – for delivering an exemplary, much-loved community asset that is averaging around 4500 visitors each week, making it a stand-out Project of the Year.

Key Facts

Location: United Kingdom
Structures: Tension Structure
Industry: Education

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