Ex-councillor complains of ‘unsafe’ street lights

The ex-councillor says the street lights are important for safety and are there for a reason. Picture: Derek Martin
The ex-councillor says the street lights are important for safety and are there for a reason. Picture: Derek Martin

An ex-councillor has raised concerns about street lights which he says are not being switched on and are ‘important for safety’.

Richard Bates, a former Haywards Heath Town Council member, noticed a ‘switched off light’ on the public bridleway, which separates Bluntswood and Cuckfield, where he regularly jogs.

He said: “This has been off for a month and is a strongly used public bridleway for dog walkers, runners and cyclists. It is also used by families and children to get to Warden Park School and is a commuter route so it is a vital connection and affects many people.

“These street lights were installed for a certain reason – which is safety – but they are not working or being maintained and this must annoy other people.”

The 67-year-old, who is semi-retired, is an avid jogger and cyclist and regularly uses the public bridleway.

After noticing the light he complained to Cuckfield Parish Council, however, he was informed that West Sussex County Council dealt with this type of work.

He said: “This was confusing and if someone else decided to report this, they wouldn’t know who to go to.

“Haywards Heath Town Council have their own contractor and when I got in touch with them before about the same issue – they dealt with this promptly. All the councils should employ the same contractor.”

Mr Bates also attends the Dolphin Leisure Centre in Pasture Hill Road, Haywards Heath and when leaving the club at night before Christmas, he spotted six switched off lights in the car park.

He said: “These have been off for three months. I reported this to Mid Sussex District Council, but this has still not been sorted. They should respond quicker, and people expect these lights to be lit.”

A spokesman from West Sussex County Council said the streetlight problem had ‘already been raised’.

He said: “This was raised on the West Sussex PFI Lighting Portal and within three working days we were at the destination and the problem appears to be a supply fault.

“Our energy supplier has been working closely with UK Power Networks to get this resolved. Our team are keeping a close eye on this as we are aware that residents are concerned.”

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