Page last updated at 16:35 GMT, Monday, 1 March 2010

Views sought on Norfolk street light switch-off plan

Street light in Norfolk
Street lighting in some areas will be turned off overnight

People living in areas of Norfolk set to lose their street lighting between midnight and 0500 GMT are to be fully consulted before lights are turned off.

Norfolk County Council's cabinet had backed the plan in January, but the council's scrutiny committee asked for further consultation.

Now local residents are to be consulted three months before anything happens.

Officers will also consult district councils, parish councils and Safer Neighbourhood Action panels.

The scheme will cost £274,000 to implement but will save the authority £167,000 annually over the next three years.

Full consultation

The cabinet agreed to go ahead with the idea of part night street lighting, with the decision to implement left to council officers following consultation.

No lights are expected to be switched off before the end of June.

The cabinet decided that before plans are brought in there will be a three stage consultation process.

Firstly, officers will carry out an initial review of the area, which will include a check on the crime rate.

Secondly local people and councils will be consulted.

Finally, four weeks before work is due to begin, local residents will be told by letter what is proposed and given a chance to raise concerns.

The scheme was backed despite a petition against the proposal, signed by 300 people, and fears it will lead to an increase in crime.

The council says there is no evidence the plans will lead to more crime.

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