Some councillors have been approached by residents who were worried about aspects of street lighting around the village. The main areas of concern centred around:
- The type of lighting in use.
- Certain residential areas have more street lighting than others.
- Street lights are not switched on throughout the night.
Thorpe Willoughby Parish Council would like to address the above issues as follows:
- Type of lighting in use: North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) has a power to provide and maintain road lighting under the Highways Act 1980. NYCC executive members approved a plan to replace existing standard sodium street lighting with new LED technology because they were more environmentally friendly, reduced carbon emissions and were more cost effective both in power consumption and expenditure.
- Residents who believe there is a need for new street lighting are encouraged to discuss it with their local Parish Council. A plan or drawing of the proposed location plus the reason for its provision is beneficial. Once the application reaches NYCC it would be treated on its own merits against the following criteria; (a) history of night-time traffic accidents or (b) incidents of night-time crime and fear of crime.
- Certain residential areas have more street lighting than others: Newly built-up areas, such as dwellings at “Willerby Heights” and Miller Homes developments benefit from additional street lighting when compared to the more established part of Thorpe Willoughby. A ‘Private Management Company’ is responsible for the infrastructure of those developments and not NYCC. Residents occupying these dwellings pay an additional levy to their ‘Private Management Company’ to cover the infrastructure as well as the precept payable to Selby District Council like all other residents of Thorpe Willoughby.
- Street lights are not switched on throughout the night: street lights of approximately 15% of the county’s roads have lights that remain illuminated throughout the night. In order for a road to qualify for all night illumination it has to fulfil one or more of the following criteria; (a) it is a main traffic route or road junction, (b) location with a significant road traffic night-time accident record, (c) areas with a significant record of night-time crime or anti-social behaviour, (d) lights outside sheltered housing and other residences accommodating vulnerable people, (e) areas with 24 hour operational emergency services including hospitals, (f) potential hazards on the highway such as traffic calming, speed humps and road crossings, (g) parts of town centres that have concentrated night-time activity or economy, (h) areas covered by police or council CCTV operations.
- The remainder are converted to part-night operation and automatically switch off between midnight and 0500hrs when road use is deemed to be at a minimum.
- Between road junctions on long minor roads every 3rd light may also be left on.
While we appreciate being approached as a first point of contact, we wish to point out that such concerns should be addressed to North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) who is the responsible Authority. Their contact number is 01609 780780. Their website can be accessed via http://www.northyorks.gov.uk/
Bert Mifsud, Chairman TWPC