North Yorkshire County Council has agreed to delay its programme of lighting column replacement in Harrogate until early in the New Year.
This delay will allow the County Council to consider an alternative proposal, put forward by the Harrogate Civic Society, to refurbish the existing cast iron columns.
The county council undertakes an annual programme of updating lanterns and lighting columns across the region and in Harrogate the plan involves replacing 240 columns in Harrogate streets, including some heritage-style lighting columns. The County Council replaced some cast iron columns in the town last year and this is a continuation of that work to replace the columns before they become unsafe.
Many of the lights are inefficient and unreliable. Older lanterns that produce an orange glow spill light in all directions, including skyward, and often do not meet minimum highway illumination requirements.
The work is scheduled to take place over several phases and the first phase was due to take place from this week. The second phase will include the installation of 60 street lighting columns for which Harrogate Borough Council has provided heritage-style equipment. These proposed heritage-style lighting columns are located primarily in The Stray area.
However the programme is now to be delayed while the county council considers a Harrogate Civic Society proposal for upgrading the existing cast iron columns.
County Councillor Don Mackenzie, North Yorkshire’s Executive Member for Highways said:
We have to do the right thing to make lighting columns efficient and safe. We undertake a rolling programme across the county. However, we have agreed to delay the programme in the town to consider this proposal from the Harrogate Civic Society for the cast iron columns.
In the interim period the County Council will undertake the replacement of decaying lighting columns in the Skipton area. This work was originally programmed to commence in January 2016 but has been brought forward to start within the next two weeks.
The programme involves replacing standard steel columns with LED lanterns that emit a white light and are designed to throw all the light downward, reducing light pollution and spillage of light onto properties. They are also more efficient, reducing energy consumption and the carbon footprint.
Where possible, the new lights will be in the same position as the old, but to meet British standards it may be necessary at some locations to re-site some columns or to install additional columns