Your questions answered

What is part-night lighting?

Part-night lighting is the term we use for a light that switches off for part of the night. The affected lights will switch on at dusk (as usual) but switch off between the hours of midnight and 5.30am Sunday to Thursday and 1am and 5.30am Friday to Saturday. The times are not affected by the change from Greenwich Mean Time to British Summer Time.

What are the benefits of going to part-night operation?

Reduction in energy bill:

The Council currently spends approximately £3.4 million a year on energy for street lighting. It is anticipated that operating street lighting on a part-night basis will save approximately £700,000 a year.

Reduction in carbon footprint:

  • As well as saving money we will reduce our CO2 emissions. The annual carbon emissions for Coventry City Council on street lighting in 2022 totalled around 2,041 tonnes. Using current figures, it is estimated that the measures we are taking could save approximately 412 tonnes of CO2 per year (which is about 18% of our current street lighting carbon emissions). These emissions savings will help us to meet both the national and local emissions reduction targets.
  • ‘sky glow’ or light pollution will be significantly reduced, allowing for better viewing of the night sky.

Will all lights be affected?

No. There are certain locations where we will not be operating part-night lighting, these are:

  • Where there are potential hazards on the highway such as roundabouts, traffic signals, low bridge structures, controlled junctions, central carriageway islands, traffic calming features, road humps outside 20mph zones, etc.
  • At formal pedestrian crossings (Zebra, Pelican, Puffin, Toucan and Pegasus)
  • Areas covered by permanent Local Authority/Police CCTV cameras
  • Areas near to elderly people care homes, sheltered accommodation complexes and A&E departments.
  • Lighting near to operational taxi ranks
  • Lighting on public footpaths, alleyways and cycle paths which are located away from roads
  • The Ring Road and city centre
  • Coventry Canal
  • District Centres where premises are operating after midnight

When will the lights be switched off?

At the City Council Cabinet meeting on 20 February 2024, the decision was made to implement the changes on a phased approach starting May 2024. The changes will be made in ward areas working from the outside of the city inwards:


  • Westwood
  • Wainbody
  • Woodlands
  • Bablake
  • Cheylesmore
  • Earlsdon
  • Binley & Willenhall
  • Holbrook
  • Longford
  • Wyken
  • Henley
  • Whoberley
  • Upper Stoke
  • Lower Stoke
  • Foleshill
  • Radford
  • Sherbourne
  • St Michael's

How many lights will be affected?

It is difficult to say exactly how many lights will be operated on a part-night basis until all assessments have been undertaken. However, we are looking at operating approximately 70% of the City Council PFI lights on a part-night basis throughout the County. This equates to approximately 22,600 lights.

Can the Council legally turn off the lights?

Yes. There is no statutory requirement on Local Authorities in the UK to light the highway. The law states that:

  • The Highways Act empowers local authorities to light roads but does not place a duty to do so.
  • The Council has a duty of care to road users and has an obligation to light permanent obstructions on the highway, such as speed humps and central refuges.

Will any lighting be switched back on?

The City Council Road Safety and Community Safety teams will monitor traffic accidents and crime levels and if there is a significant increase, which could be put down to the part night operation of the lighting, the area will be reviewed by officers and lights may be turned back to all night operation.

In the majority of areas, nationwide, that this type of scheme is in operation before and after crime levels have dropped. The authority will not be switching off lights in areas where there is acknowledged crime and/or anti-social behavioural problems.

Full-time lighting will not be reinstated in the following cases:

  • Where there is a fear of increased crime
  • To provide increased lighting to aid recreational or social activities

In the case of an emergency, such as road traffic collision or an area search, the Police will be able to request the lights to be switched back on for the duration of the incident.

Have lights been switched off in other parts of the country?

Yes. Part-night lighting has been introduced in many parts of the country such as Warwickshire, Southampton, Buckinghamshire, Devon, Dorset, Essex, Gloucestershire, Leicestershire, Powys and Oxfordshire. There are many other Councils that are now implementing or considering part-night lighting.

Will 30mph speed limits be affected if lights are switched off?

No. A 30mph speed limit automatically applies in any road containing a system of streetlights not more than 200 yards apart, unless signposted with a different speed limit. There is currently no law stating that these lights must be switched on all night for the speed limit to be applicable. Therefore, motorists are advised that the usual 30mph speed limit will be in place regardless of whether the lights are switched on or not.

Can’t you just dim lights instead of switching them off?

The PFI streetlights that have the capability of being dimmed have already been dimmed.

Why can’t you switch off every other light?

We have considered this option, however, we know that we need to reduce our CO2 emissions to avoid penalties and safeguard against the rise of energy prices in the future. Switching off every other light would not help us avoid these issues.

In addition:

  • Intermittent lighting can make it more difficult to drive in. This is because drivers would need to adjust between dark and lighter levels as they’re driving.
  • Isolated units may also attract a congregation of people

Can’t you just fit lower power bulbs?

No. The bulbs or lamps are controlled by specific gear within the lantern. To change the lamp to a lower energy type would require replacing the control gear which would not be cost effective. Where we are replacing or upgrading the lighting in an area, we do always look at using lower energy equipment but this will still be operated on a part-night basis to help reduce costs.

Can I choose the times the light outside my house operates?

No. All PFI street lighting will be treated the same throughout the city and affected lights will be switched off between midnight and 5.30am Sunday to Thursday and 1am to 5.30am Friday and Saturday.

I park my car on the road, will part-night lighting affect this?

We recognise that in many residential estates there is no off-road parking, or that the demand for parking exceeds that which is available off-road, and residents then park their vehicles on the road.

With the change to part-night lighting, it is advised to ensure that if you park over-night on the road, you do so in accordance with the requirements of the highway code to ensure your vehicle is visible to other road users. The highway code has the following rules for parking at night:

  • You must not park on a road at night facing against the direction of the traffic flow unless in a recognised parking space.
  • All vehicles must display parking lights when parked on a road or a lay-by on a road with a speed limit greater than 30 mph (48 km/h).

Further information on parking can be found on the website - - The Highway Code (Waiting and Parking)

Will my Council Tax be reduced because of this?

No. The Council needs to reduce its spending and the money saved by part-night lighting will go towards making these savings rather than to reduce council tax payments.

How are home insurance and insurance claims affected by this street lighting trial?

Coventry City Council does not have a statutory requirement to provide public lighting. The Council does have a duty of care to road users and will continue to light important junctions, roundabouts, subways, etc, to keep drivers and road users safe. Street lighting within the vicinity of your property is not something that insurance companies will or should take into account when developing home insurance or property policies. Our lighting is not in place to protect private properties and as such this was not taken into consideration as a factor when deciding to proceed with the trial. Therefore, street lighting within the vicinity of your property is not an element that insurance companies will or should take into account when developing home insurance or property policies.

What if I disagree with the Council’s approach to part night lighting?

The Council has made a decision to part-night street lighting across the city.

If you believe we have applied the criteria incorrectly, you can email