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Roads: Lighting

Transport written question – answered on 29th November 2011.

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Photo of Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps her Department has taken to encourage local councils to improve street lighting.

Photo of Norman Baker Norman Baker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport

It is for each local highway authority to decide what level of service they wish their street lighting network to deliver. Local highway authorities have a duty, under Section 41 of the Highways Act 1980, to maintain the public highways in their charge. The duty to maintain the highway includes street lighting. Authorities do not have a duty to light any particular parts of their networks but, where lighting has been provided, the authority has a duty to maintain it.

The Department for Transport is providing £3 billion over the four years from 2011-12 to local highway authorities in England (excluding London) for highways maintenance which can be used for. the street lighting assets. In addition, the Department has approved long-term funding for 32 local authority street lighting projects (including London) with total annuity value for these projects of £2.5 billion.

The Department for Transport is also a member of the UK Lighting Board, a sector led group that meets quarterly to develop and share best practice on the improvement of street lighting. We also endorse the UK Lighting Board's code of practice for highway lighting management, well-lit highways, available at:


This code sets out a framework of recommended guidance and standards for authorities to follow.

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