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Eric Pickles dismisses fears over street lights being switched off

Politics / Tue 29th Apr 2014 at 08:38am

ericpCOMMUNITIES secretary and Brentwood and Ongar MP, Eric Pickles has dismissed calls to switch street lights back on in Essex, saying he wouldn’t do it “on the off chance someone wants to get out and do aerobics at 3am.”

The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government was attacked by councillors from his own party over his comments about the controversial part-night lighting scheme, which involves street lights being turned off between midnight and 5am.

They were made as he launched the Conservative Party’s election campaign for Basildon Council on Friday reports the Basildon Recorder.

Mr Pickles, MP for Brentwood and Ongar, said: “Essex County Council has been immensely brave because the easy thing would be to keep the lights on.

“In a time when we are on the cusp with regards to our electricity supply, we can’t have lights burning all night on the off chance someone wants to get out and do aerobics at 3am.

“I love it because I am economy- minded. It’s saving a phenomenal amount of money, it’s decreased crime because burglars love ambient lighting, it’s nice to see the night sky and, as someone who lives in a main street that has had its lights cut off, I can get a good night’s sleep.”

If Mr Pickles comes to Harlow, we will make sure to question him on this subject.

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