Street lights out all over Wiltshire
Around half of Wiltshire's street lights are to be switched off between midnight and 5.30am.
Wiltshire Council – which already turns off lights on some rural roads such as the A4 at Rudloe – has agreed a new energy and money-saving scheme. The measures could save £380,000 a year.
The council will also dim lighting levels at less busy times, use LED lighting, or similar energy efficient lighting, in new installations, and turn off street lighting where there are no significant pedestrian movements or safety concerns.
In February the council asked the public to comment on where savings could be made in its 2012/13 budget. Reducing street lighting costs scored the highest of the seven savings options. Following this, another public consultation was set up to find out how the savings should be made.
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Councillor Dick Tonge, cabinet member for highways, said: "The consultation showed that most people were concerned about light pollution and thought there was too much street lighting. There was also agreement that lights should remain on at junctions, in town centres, in subways and alleyways. We have more than 40,000 street lights and most of these are on all night whether they're needed or not. The feedback from the consultation has really helped us put forward a scheme that will save electricity and will be acceptable to residents."
The lights on the A4 are among more than 1,300 street lights that have already been converted to part-night operation.
The council has also converted its illuminated bollards to low energy units.
Out of the 246 responses, the majority were in favour of these changes, with 73.2 percent thinking many or some of the lights should be turned off permanently, 86.2 per cent that many or some should be turned off between midnight and 5.30am, and 91.1 per cent that many or some should be dimmed.