Powys switch off street lights

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Deimos
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Powys switch off street lights

Post by Deimos »

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/e ... 783298.ece

Interesting and you can add a brief comment. People might like to add appropriate comments ?

Ian

Vega
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Post by Vega »

Commented...

I've added the comment that there is a need for more survey's in to crime during switch off's compared to normal nights. Theres not enough evidence to back up the idea that crime increases IMO. I also added that its a dreadful waste for thousands of lights to be left on throughout the night :D

Matt
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Astronick
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Post by Astronick »

This story was just featured on the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. Unfortunately some residents are finding it difficult to live without the street lights and in particular, one woman who was interviewed says she has to now return home before it gets dark because of her fear.

As an amateur astronomer I am obviously for initiatives like this, but I do think they need to be done with thought and consideration for all interested parties. Well designed, directional lighting and the use of timers to remove light later in the night could all be used to strike a balance between safety and dark skies.
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Davej
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Post by Davej »

Vega wrote:Commented...

I've added the comment that there is a need for more survey's in to crime during switch off's compared to normal nights. Theres not enough evidence to back up the idea that crime increases IMO. I also added that its a dreadful waste for thousands of lights to be left on throughout the night :D

Matt
I totally agree Matt,
My elderley mother in law was mugged, my mother had her purse/debit card stolen (her bank balance was cleared out) my car has had things stole from it...all in broad daylight.
Looks to me we are safer at night in darkness.
ATB
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Post by astro_dt »

Astronick wrote:This story was just featured on the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. Unfortunately some residents are finding it difficult to live without the street lights and in particular, one woman who was interviewed says she has to now return home before it gets dark because of her fear.
I heard this interview as well, the lady in question was partially sighted and couldn't see without the street lights. I have a partially sighted friend and can sympathise with the lady in the interview. However, she was asking for street lights to be put on a timer which suggested that council had just turned the street lights off!

Turning the lights out from mid-night is not unreasonable, although as an astronomer I would prefer earlier.

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Post by Zeke »

In the 70s I travelled around the north of England in a band.
I was amazed to see street lights, on the motorways, still on in the daytime.
Now I know this is no help to astronomers but I assume the same people who turn on the lights at night turn them on leave them on in the daytime.
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rcragg
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Post by rcragg »

The switch off is just over the border from us - the reason given is that only 1 in 3 lights can be kept on to save money. The police and locals are up in arms about it as 'crime will soar'. Of course they offer no figures to prove it as the lights have not been off before.

Certainly in some places we have stayed at crime only soared after the lights are installed. Round us (no lights) the most normal time for robberies is in the day - except for sheep stealing and no-one knows when that happens!

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Post by Andrew INT »

To add my 2 pence worth to Matt's comments. As an ex-police officer, I often found that well lit areas help to increase theft rates since the people involved can actually see what they are intending to steal or break in to. These days not many people intervene if a security light is activated unless its their own system- and the chances are that they will be out at the time of a break-in anyway.

The bain for me is the clear-glass globe type lighting in supermarkets. Most of the energy is dirrected upwards for no reason whatsoever. Not only adding to light pollution, but also a pointless waste of power.
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Post by rcragg »

We haven't got lights here. All the crime happens in daylight as at night if you don't know the area you can just get lost.

Most popular time for crime here is in working hours and Saturday afternoons - when people are out.

I understand The county council (just over the border) are going to review the lights situation once they are off, maybe putting them on again. Meanwhile at least one Parish council have paid to keep theirs on - and will up the local taxes to do this!

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Post by rcragg »

The Shropshire Star sent a reporter to Knighton on the Welsh-Shropshire border where 2 in 3 lights have been off for a month now. His piece, 'Living life in the twilight zone.' was in Saturday's paper (25th October).

In fact, apart from the title the piece is very neutral with him walking round in the dark chatting to locals.
The local youth seem unaffected as their phones have a light feature.
Others have torches as the kerbs in the town are not user friendly.
Pattens of behaviour have changed but comments along the line that life is just as livable and you get used to it seem to be the norm.
One complainant was a former mayor who said his family were out as normal but less people were about, the lights should be on, will crime rise!
A shopkeeper, while happy he had sold lots of torches said less people were sat around the town at night than had been and that you had to feel sorry for old people who might fall down.
Another wanted the lights on so she could see her enemies!
Another resident, dropping the kids off for brass band practice said darkness had not affected social activities in the town but again said it might affect the old.
Going out to the estates round the town where even more lights seemed to be off the reporter found plenty of activity - even if sometimes he could only hear it! In one road kids were playing on a rope swing - unbothered that there were no lights at all - while in an adjacent road a football match was going on lit only by the stars.
There were joggers too - seen only in the headlamps of cars.
The final comment was that it was noticable everywhere how the stars were now visible - even in the heart of town. Obviously this impressed our reporter.



(On the old people bit - I am an OAP and know lots of others. Round here there are no lights but people still come and go on foot, taxi or car. It always annoys when they say 'the old etc.' as a reason for their ideas - I've heard it on a variety of subjects where I reckon most oldies would give the self opinionated talking head short shrift!)

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