Video: Removing chandeliers from the Centre Block

Watch this video to see experts carefully removing the beautiful chandeliers in the Senate and House of Commons Chambers. They removed the chandeliers to protect and restore them during the Centre Block project.

Transcript of Removing chandeliers from the Centre Block

Start of video

[Music plays]

(Text on screen: Public Services and Procurement Canada)

[A wide shot of the Senate of Canada is shown. The camera pans across the empty room.]

They shine a light on some of Canada’s most iconic spaces.

[Shot of the ornate celling is shown, 2 large chandeliers hang from above as the image slowly pulls away to reveal more of the room.]

Beautiful chandeliers adorn the ceilings in the Senate and House of Commons Chambers and illuminate the intricate features in these historic rooms.

[Shots of the House of Commons and the chandeliers are shown as well.]

For nearly 100 years, two massive chandeliers- weighing approximately 3,400 pounds each- have hung from the gold coffered ceiling of the Senate Chamber.

[A historic image in black and white shows the senate chandelier from many years ago. The image fades into a more recent image of the chandelier in colour. Showing a close up and wider shot of both.]

(Text on screen: Courtesy: Library and Archives Canada)

The fixtures are made of bronze, cast iron, aluminum and white flashed opal glass.

[The shot looks up into the centre of the senate chandelier showing details as it slowly rotates. Close ups show the materials.]

Each chandelier consists of 12 lanterns which were upgraded in the 1950s to cylindrical shades in order to project more light.

[Shot of a worker disassemble the Chandelier.]

[Shot of the ceiling of the Senate of Canada to show the fully illumined chandelier.]

In the House of Commons Chamber, six impressive chandeliers hang from the ceiling.

[A shot from the celling shows the House of Commons with the chandeliers hanging below.]

The fixtures were installed in 1978 and weigh approximately 400 pounds each.

[Shot of the ceiling of the House of Common to show one of the chandelier.]

[Image of two chandeliers of the House of Common.]

They are built primarily of steel, with cast aluminum and cast brass components, as well as leaded glass panels.

[Close shot shows the details and settings for the chandeliers.]

During the rehabilitation of Centre Block, the light fixtures in both spaces needed to be removed to prevent damage from construction and to allow conservators the opportunity to assess their condition and make recommendations on any work needed to replace, repair or modernize them.

[Shot of Centre block under rehabilitation construction.]

[Shot of a worker disassemble a part of the chandeliers.]

[Shot of workers clean elements of the chandeliers.]

[Shot of workers disassemble elements of the chandeliers.]

[Shot of parts set aside carefully awaiting conservators.]

Removing the chandeliers required a lot of patience and creativity.

[A high-speed image of workers using a custom rigging to lower a large metal part of chandelier is shown.]

It was unclear how the original engineers hoisted the fixtures, so workers had to develop their own unique plan on how to take them down.

[The high-speed image continues as workers use unique techniques, ropes, methods to move part out of room.]

[Shot of workers in planning meeting.]

The weight of the chandeliers required custom engineered scaffolding and hoists be installed to support the lowering of each light fixture to the floor.

[Shot of workers inspecting the chandelier.]

[Shot of workers preparing to lower chandelier.]

[Shot of a worker disassembling parts of the chandelier using specialized tool.]

[Shot of a worker disassembling the light fixture part of the chandelier.]

[Shot of workers disassembling chandeliers and removing parts.]

Crews carefully took apart sections of the chandeliers to make the removal from the room more manageable.

Once on the floor, a scaffold and trolley beam system was used to bring the large pieces out of the building.

[A high-speed image of workers using specialized tools move the parts out of the building. Cranes and large storage containers are used once outside.]

Crates were designed and constructed to hold the chandeliers and keep them safe at the Centre Block heritage storage facility.

[Shot of a conservator moves items into a specialized crate for storage.]

[Image of the storage centre with isles of stored items is shown.]

This rehabilitation we are doing now will preserve the heritage character and beauty of light in these iconic spaces, while increasing energy-efficiency and meeting modern code requirements.

[Close up image of the chandelier of the Senate of Canada.]

[Image of the Senate of Canada showing the character.]

[Wide image of light filled shot of Senate of Canada.]

[Shot of conservators working to disassemble parts.]

The major work being undertaken will ensure the Centre Block will continue serving Canada and Canadians well into the future.

[Various ornate images of the House of Commons and Senate of Canada are shown.]

[Music stops]

(Text on screen: This video was produced in accordance with public health guidelines in place at the time of recording.

(Text on screen: Check us out:,,,

(Public Services and Procurement Canada signature)

(Canada Wordmark)

End of video

Related links

Date modified: