Street lights set to stay on later following “widespread concern”

Streetlights on Bradley Stoke Way.

Street lights in Bradley Stoke that are currently switched off at around midnight look set to be left on for an extra hour each night, after Labour councillors negotiated an extra £50,000 of expenditure in South Gloucestershire Council’s (SGC’s) revenue budget for 2014/15.

A party spokesperson said the concession was being made in response to “widespread concern from residents about the council’s part-night lighting programme”.

Within the “main urban areas” of South Gloucestershire (understood to mean the area inside the M4/M5 line plus Yate, Thornbury and Winterbourne), the conversion to the new “standard hours of illumination” of dusk to 1am and 5am to dawn will be commenced in the financial year 2014/15 and be completed during 2015/16. Outside the main urban area the conversion will be implemented as part of the council’s LED street light rollout programme, which is planned to be implemented over a ten year period starting in April 2014.

The cost-saving part-night street lighting scheme was introduced in Bradley Stoke in 2011 after a public consultation conducted by the town council found that 54% of those replying were in favour.

Under localism provisions in SGC’s proposed new Street Lighting Policy, parish/town councils and even “formal community groups and organisations” will be able to purchase (buy back) full-night lighting with an annual charge levied to reflect the additional energy and maintenance cost.

The proposals will be considered by members of SGC’s Planning, Transportation & Strategic Environment (PTSE) Committee at their meeting this Wednesday (26th March) in Filton.

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  1. Community groups and organisations will be able to buy back full night lighting at a cost, and the rest of us be grateful for an extra hour or so lighting. Is it just me or should lighting you be standard in this day and age. Another opportunity to make money from an essential, such as green bins, yet every year being told less and less available. Funny how the wages of these councils don’t take a hit or reduced some how. Sick of my wife having to walk down roads and alleyways in pitch black some nights coming home from work. We don’t all work 9 to 5, or own cars.

  2. Public safety vs saving money, how is this still in question???

    It is ridiculous that we must continually have concern of our loved ones walking down a quiet street safely for the sake of saving money. All this started following the change of the local town council building where they spend thousands on new curtains if I recall? Money well spent?

    I dread every day which my girlfriend must walk to and from the bus stop on night shift when the street lights are switched off. In some other areas there have been reported increases in violent attacks where street lighting has been turned off at night. The pain of those victims can’t be paid off by a mere council apology for wishing to save a few pennies. God hope that never happen to anyone around here.

  3. If street lighting should be standard, then should we be thinking of lighting every small village in the country and every lane where people live?
    Are us humans are becoming too soft and reliant on modern day things?

  4. Think its a good way to save money haven’t heard of any attacks due to lights being out,but on or off people will still set out to attack people nothing to do with lights

  5. In response to Fluffy Chicken’s comment – I opted to live in a town as opposed to the country beause I didn’t want to walk down dark roads at night. If you choose to live in the country, then you expect a restriction in certain amenities.

    When you move to a town, you expect certain things, such as street lighting (and collection of green waste!).

  6. Katie, that’s a valid point and I think many would say that. Do you think if that’s the case then people in towns should pay more on their council tax for those privelidges?

  7. I fail to see the issue in keeping the lights on at night, and the cost shouldn’t be beyond anybodies reach. The £50,000 extra spent on lighting in the year spread across the 10,000 homes in Bradley Stoke would make the cost about £5 per person. So if we had the lights on for the remaining 4 hours per night, how much will this additional cost be to us tax payers? £10 per year? It hardly seems excessive, instead in seems like the Council is penny pinching a bit.

  8. @whysoserious: The £50,000 is the cost across the whole of South Gloucestershire (of an extra hour’s lighting).

    The annual saving in electricity costs obtained through part-night lighting (@ 5 hours per night) IN BRADLEY STOKE was estimated by SGC at £16,800 (2013 prices), with annual carbon emissions being reduced by 105 tonnes. Shared across across the 8,653 homes in Bradley Stoke (2011 census) that comes to £1.94 per home per year.

  9. I see I misread that bit, oops 😀

    Thank you for breaking down the numbers, very interesting to see that it really isn’t much of a cost per household at all. I certainly wouldn’t have a problem with forking out an extra £1.94 per year if it might allow some travelling at night to feel more secure. And perhaps the added carbon emissions would benefit the local plantlife, them plants love a bit of CO2 😀

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