Parliament building to be installed with 21st century remote monitoring systems

Parliament building to be installed with 21st century remote monitoring systems

Westminster Hall

21st century, internet-enabled data monitoring systems are soon to be installed at Westminster Hall


Built-in 1097 under William II (Rufus), the son of William the Conqueror, Westminster Hall is the oldest building on the Parliamentary Estate. What makes it such an astonishing building is not simply its great size and the magnificence of its roof, but its central role in British history. In and around the Hall, grew up the major institutions of the British state: Parliament, the law courts, and various government offices. Today it is used as one of the principal entrances into the Houses of Parliament and the location for significant State events.

The magnificent hammer-beam roof of Westminster Hall is the largest medieval timber roof in Northern Europe. Measuring 21m by 73m (68ft by 240ft) and some 30m tall, the roof was commissioned in 1393 by Richard II, and is still standing!

While much is known about the events that took place in the Hall’s 900-year history, in reality little is known about the internal atmosphere, which is why Caption Data have been commissioned by The Houses of Parliament to provide a remote monitoring system.

Local MP, Robin Walker of Worcester, recently met Paul Sanders, Director of Caption Data during a pre-installation visit at Westminster Hall.

Robin Walker said, “Hopefully 21st century internet based monitoring from Worcester based Caption Data will help preserve this fabulous building for many more centuries to come!”

About the remote monitoring solution

Caption Data will be supplying wireless temperature and humidity monitoring equipment, that will be installed throughout the structure of the hammer beam roof. This is ideal for the vast space and the thick walls within the hall.

Measurements taken using the wireless sensors will include timber moisture levels, temperatures, and humidity, all from various places around the giant structure.

In addition to the measurements inside the hall, there will be a full weather station installed on the roof which will measure wind speed, rain, sunshine, temperature, and humidity. The weather station has been externally sourced and equipped with the latest technology from Caption Data to provide the Houses of Parliament with online and real-time monitoring of data collected using the weather station. The rooftop weather station data will allow correlations to be made between the weather and conditions in the hall.

The RDL//1000 base station

The sensors will need maximum battery life as they will not be easily replaced when they are 30 meters in the air!  Sensors will also be specially camouflaged so as not to detract from the magnificent appearance of the structure. The base station will be located out of sight and will automatically transmit data from all of the sensors via the mobile phone network to secure data servers.

The Parliamentary Estate’s Directorate and the team involved in the conservation project will be able to view trends of data online and in real-time from any mobile device, laptop, PC, or MAC through the Caption Data web portal. Allowing them to establish the best conservation treatments for the internal stonework and roof timbers. Another valuable benefit of Caption Data’s remote monitoring system is in the ability to set alarm thresholds that when met trigger SMS and Email alarms to key personnel to warn them of potentially unsafe or dangerous levels.

About Caption Data

Caption Data manufacture remote monitoring equipment for a range of different applications. We specialise in providing online and real-time monitoring solutions, through our products and by working with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) to create onboard or embedded systems.

For further information about our solutions or to discuss online and real-time monitoring integration with your current systems, you may contact us by email or call +44 (0)1905 754078.

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