More street lights to be turned off in Shropshire to save energy
More towns and villages across Shropshire will be left in darkness when street lights are switched off after midnight to save energy.
Thousands of street lights in north Shropshire are set to be switched off in the middle of the night to help Shropshire Council bosses cut costs.
The towns and villages affected include Adderley, Calverhall, Cheswardine, Childs Ercall, Hadnall, Hinstock, Ightfield, Market Drayton, Norton-in-Hales, Prees, Higher Heath, Shawbury, Stoke-upon-Tern, Wem, Whitchurch and Woore. Shropshire Council says work is due to start in July and be completed within two to three months.
Concerns have already been raised by councillors and civic leaders in the towns and villages affected. They fear it could lead to an increase in crime and impact on vulnerable people, such as the elderly.
About 12,500 street lights of the 18,900 maintained by Shropshire Council are being converted to part-night lighting as part of a project which began in April 2012.
The scheme will see the lights switch off at midnight and come back on at 5.30am to save carbon and energy costs.
Lights in the Oswestry, Shrewsbury and south Shropshire have already been converted. The final area, the former Bridgnorth District Council patch, will be converted later this year.
Councillor Claire Wild, Shropshire Council's cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "A partnership group, made up of council officers and the police, regularly monitor crime levels to see if there is any evidence that safety is being affected by street lights being off at night.
"On the whole, reaction has been positive, because they can appreciate that in most cases it's simply a waste of energy to have street lights on all through the night.
"A lot of people have also appreciated the reduction in light pollution too, which makes it much easier to view the night sky."
- Star comment: Switch off not such bad thing
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