Light nuisance

We can investigate light nuisance complaints where the light nuisance is severe - for example preventing you from sleeping. We cannot take action if normal levels of artificial light shine on to your property.

Before you report a complaint against your neighbour, you should speak to them as they might not know they are causing a problem. You could ask them to:

  • move or partially shade the light
  • fit an infra red sensor
  • use a lower wattage bulb as they are much cheaper and far more efficient.

If your neighbour will not take action, you can report the problem to the Environmental Protection Team.

An officer will contact you and arrange for an out of hours officer to visit you to see the problem.

If a statutory nuisance is found, the offender will be issued with a formal notice telling them to take action. If they fail to take action they may face prosecution.

How to avoid causing light pollution

  • Do not fit unnecessary lights.
  • Do not use excessively bright lights. A 150 watt tungsten halogen lamp is quite adequate, and 300 or 500 watt bulbs are too powerful for domestic security lighting.
  • Do not leave lights on when they are not needed.
  • Consider controlling lights with passive infra-red detectors, make sure that they are correctly aligned and installed. For a porch light that is going to be left on all night, a nine watt compact fluorescent lamp is normally enough.
  • Keep glare to a minimum by making sure the main beam angle of all lights directed towards anyone who may be affected is not more than 70 degrees. Higher mounting heights allow lower angles, which can help to reduce glare.

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