Have a say on big light switch

A timetable for introducing plans to turn off some of the county’s street lights between midnight and 5.30am has been drawn-up by Derbyshire County Council (DCC).

By the end of May next year, a number of communities in the High Peak and Derbyshire Dales will have some lights switched off for a few hours each night in the first phase of plans to help cut carbon and save taxpayers’ money.

Councillor Simon Spencer, DCC’s deputy leader and cabinet member for highways and transport said: “We won’t switch off all street lights but as most people are in bed between midnight and 5.30am we believe some lighting isn’t needed.”

Over the next four years DCC expects to turn off around 40,000 of its 89,000 street lights between midnight and 5.30am and 900 permanently.

Detailed assessments will be carried out in each area to decide which lights could be switched off. Plans will be available to view in each community in venues such as libraries, shops or schools.

People will be able to comment online or in writing to DCC which will only keep lights on if there’s evidence to show it would be unsafe to switch them off.

Community Engagement will take place in Youlgrave, Chelmorton and Hartington in July and in Whaley Bridge and Chapel-en-le-Frith in August.

Lights would not be turned off in certain locations including: some main traffic routes; in town centres; locations with a significant night-time traffic accident record; areas identified as having an above average record of crime; areas provided with CCTV; areas with sheltered housing and areas with a 24 hour operational emergency services site including hospitals.

Visit www.derbyshire.gov.uk/streetlights to see the programme for 2012/13.