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Light Pollution

We have a duty to investigate statutory light pollution under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005, however the best method of dealing with light pollution is at the planning stage.

Artificial light is essential in our modern society. However, the increased use of lighting can cause problems. Light in the wrong place at the wrong time can be intrusive, for example a poorly angled security light that shines into a neighbours property.

Sky glow is the orange glow seen over towns and roads from upward light. This is a serious problem for astronomers as the artificial brightness of the sky overpowers distant stars, especially those low in the night sky.

We are receiving more complaints each year about lighting, mainly from poorly angled security lights that annoy people living in neighbouring or nearby properties. Before you install lighting please consider:

  • Is it really needed ?
  • Does the light need to be on all night?
  • What level of lighting is required ?
  • The correct alignment of security lights?

The Law

The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 amends the Environmental Protection Act 1990 to include statutory nuisance from artificial light.

However this does not include light emitted from the following premises. These are premises used for transport purposes and other premises where high levels of light are required for safety and security reasons, i.e.;

  • Airports
  • Harbours
  • Railway premises
  • Tramway premises
  • Bus stations and associated facilities
  • Public service vehicle operating centres
  • Goods vehicle operating centres
  • Lighthouses
  • Prisons
  • Premises occupied for Defence purposes

New developments

The best method of dealing with light pollution is at the planning stage. This is an ideal time to influence the design or installation of lighting schemes. If you are bothered by light, try approaching your neighbour to discuss the problem and come to a solution.

How to Report a Problem

Make a note of where the light is located and contact us via the details in your Council.

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