We have Joseph Swan to thank for much of this view. Born in Sunderland he moved to work in Newcastle where he invented the light bulb. On 3 February 1879, he showed off his perfected incandescent lamp at Newcastle's Literary and Philosophical Society.
Souter Lighthouse, opened in 1871, was the first in the world purpose built to be lit by electricity. The bulbs were 4,500 watt and could produce a beam of 1.5million candlepower with a range of over 20 miles.
The light bulb's uses are many and varied. Without them Penshaw Monument on Wearside would be far less imposing in the dark.
The Electric Estate at Cragside in Northumberland, part of a wider illumination project called The Northumberland Lights. Cragside was one of the first houses to be lit by electric light bulbs.
It's not just Newcastle's Civic Centre which has reason to thank Joseph Swan. Mosley Street in the city is said to be the first in the world to be lit by electric light bulbs.
City dwellers take unnatural light for granted, not least those who commute.
Photographers and artists find the light bulb and its descendants indispensable. From dark room safe lights (once upon a time) and the flash to well placed uplighting on possible photographic subjects.
Gloria Ronchi's "Rose's Halo" was part of the Enchanted Park's light installation in Saltwell Park in Gateshead.
The Longstone Lighthouse, on the Farne Islands, from where the famous heroine Grace Darling spied the wrecked Forfarshire.
Imagine the Gateshead Millennium Bridge - but without the pretty lights. Now, aren't you pleased Joseph Swan didn't give up when his first attempts went pop?
What are these?