Salehurst and Robertsbridge Parish Council


17th January 2022

Salehurst & Robertsbridge Parish Council





The Parish Council maintains a portfolio of 90 streetlights which provide a valuable service to the community in terms of significantly increased pavement / road visibility and additional personal security. There is much publicly available evidence to support the benefits of streetlighting in respect of crime deterrence. It is worth noting that the provision of streetlighting is not a statutory obligation and many parish councils provide very few if any streetlights.


The current cost of providing streetlights is as follows: £5700 pa for electricity and £3900 for maintenance. Discussions have occurred over the last two years with our current contractor and at Parish Council meetings regarding the financial / environmental benefits of an upgrade of our current streetlighting.


The proposal

To replace the lighting units on our 84 modern steel columns with new LED units (one column was replaced in 2021 and has an LED unit (located by the bridge opposite the Post Office). As part of the same project, we would replace the remaining two cast iron and four concrete columns (which are well past design life and cannot be repaired when they fail) with new steel columns with LED units.)


The anticipated total cost of the proposal is £44,000 which would be financed by a loan repayable over a period of eight years. It should be noted that other local authorities have chosen to upgrade their streetlighting portfolios to LED and some are funding these projects via loans. The loan repayments will not require any increase in the precept because the savings from lower electricity and maintenance bills will offset the loan.


It is important to note that before applying for any loan the Parish Council must submit a formal application in the first instance to the National Association of Local Councils which, if deemed acceptable in regard to meeting statutory information requirements, will be sent to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. The money can only be borrowed if formal approval is then granted by the Secretary of State.



Financial / environmental benefits of the proposed upgrade programme

- Switching to LED lamps will deliver a significant reduction in electricity consumption (between 60 - 80%) together with a significant reduction (approx. 50%) in ad hoc maintenance and replacement due to much longer lifetimes (the new LED lighting units have a 10 year manufacturer's guarantee).

- Electricity prices are expected to rise in the short to medium term future due to the significant investment that will have to be made by the energy networks operators to enable the transition to a low carbon economy supported by moves away from petrol / diesel vehicles and gas fired central heating in new and existing housing.

- Interest rates are expected to rise during 2022 so it makes financial sense to borrow money at today's available lower fixed rates.

- The new lamps will reduce the impact on the environment, including lower carbon emissions (through lower usage of electricity) and the reduced adverse impact on wildlife as they will meet "Dark Skies" recommendations which aim to protect the UK's dark skies and night-time landscape by reducing and controlling obtrusive light.


Opportunity to comment

If any resident wishes to comment on the proposal they should submit their comments in writing either by post or by email to the Parish Clerk within 21 calendar days of the publication of this notice. The Parish Clerk can be contacted by email at or by post at the Parish Council office.