LIGHTS OUT in Winchester

In a dramatic bid to commemorate the declaration of war in 1914, venues across the Winchester district will join other venues across the UK and turn off their lights from 10pm to 11pm on 4th August, leaving on a single light or candle to create a shared moment of reflection. Part of the Imperial War Museum’s NOW 14-18 ‘LIGHTS OUT’ initiative, the event references a remark attributed to Sir Edward Grey, Foreign Secretary, upon the eve of war in 1914: “The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our life-time."


The 459 Box is a light sculpture commissioned by Winchester City Council and designed by AR Design Studio to commemorate the centenary of the First World War.

The box's dimensions are 1100mm x 1100mm x 1100mm - informed by the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month … the Armistice. The box is lit from the inside and it is perforated with 459 holes, one for each of the Winchester fallen from the 1914-18 war. 43 further coloured holes shine in remembrance of those who lost their lives from 43 areas of the wider Winchester district.

The box is made of corten steel, a metal that rusts and offers a reminder of trench structures and decay. As people move around the box individual holes shine reminding them not only of the collective sacrifice but also the individuals involved

The box will be located at Winchester Cathedral close to the two war memorials already in the grounds from Monday 4 August.

Boxing clever…Behind the scenes at the making of Box 459