Residents living on the Angmering-On-Sea Estate have spoken of their outrage at East Preston Parish Council for withdrawing funding for their street lights.
The EPPC has provided the estate with lighting for 25 years, but has withdrawn this facility as a cost cutting measure which they say will save them £3,000 per year.
The lighting columns were replaced two years ago at a cost of £20,000, but will now be removed at an estimated cost of £20,000 to £30,000, and may affect over 300 homes.
One concerned resident wrote in to the Gazette, saying: “The Angmering-On-Sea Estate is used by the general public to gain access to the beach, the White Lodge Care Home and other businesses.
“The majority of roads do not have pavements. This means that all pedestrians will be walking on unlit roads after 4pm during winter months. The safety of pedestrians and in particular school children who walk home at 4pm is of great concern. Potential increases to local crime is also a concern. Feelings are running very high.”
The Angmering-On-Sea Estate Residents Association has been paying to keep the lights on since May 1 while they try to negotiate a new deal with the parish council.
A spokesman for the parish council said: “Like many other councils, in response to central government cutbacks, East Preston Parish Council has had to give very careful consideration to what it can continue to fund. These are not good times financially and the council has had to make the difficult decision to stop funding street lighting on the estate.
“The parish council has no statutory obligation to provide street lighting on any road. East Preston Parish Council has provided the Angmering-On-Sea estate with street lighting for the past 25 years but it can no longer afford to do so. Past decisions do not always remain sustainable. The money saved will be put towards projects to benefit more of the wider village community.
“This decision is not about disregarding the health and safety of East Preston residents, but is about finance. This council believes Angmering-On-Sea may be the only private estate in the country which has benefitted from a parish council providing it with street lighting.”
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