Warwickshire’s bid for tens of millions of pounds to replace its street lights with money-saving LED technology has been unsuccessful.
But the county council will still spend £4 million of its own money in order to roll out the new lighting in some heavily populated areas where lights still stay on through the night such as Nuneaton and Bedworth.
The cash-strapped council had bid for £20 million from a £260 million pot of Government money being made available for infrastructure such as street lighting and road and bridge maintenance.
This means that the council will continue with its part-night lighting regime in which street lights are turned off late at night in certain areas.
The current scheme saves the council about £500,000 a year but with the extra cash being spent on LED lighting this saving could be boosted to about £750,000.
Cllr Peter Butlin, Warwickshire County Council’s portfolio holder for transport and highways, said he was disappointed the bid had been unsuccessful but that the authority would continue to look for ways it could both save money while keeping lights switched on and said it would make bids if more grant money became available in the future.
Moving to LED streetlights is still a win-win-winCllr Jonathon Chilvers
Cllr Butlin said: “I’ve always been consistent in my view that should the money or technology become available to go with a different regime I would pursue that.
“The biggest things are that it‘ll use less money, is efficient and is environmentally friendly - LED lighting would enable us to deliver this.
Leamington councillor Jonathon Chilvers , of the Green Party, said: “Our view is that the council can still afford to put in more than £4 million.
“Moving to LED streetlights is still a win-win-win. It saves electricity so it’s good for the environment, some lights can be turned back on, so it’s good for communities, and the Council can get a return of three or four per cent on their money rather than the tiny interest rate returns if money’s in the bank.”