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‘It did my head in’ - lamppost finally switched off after burning for six years straight

PUBLISHED: 12:19 03 March 2020 | UPDATED: 17:39 03 March 2020

Richard Bonham, a resident of Star Farm Close, has been trying to get the street-lamp switched off for five years. PHOTO: Sarah Burgess

Richard Bonham, a resident of Star Farm Close, has been trying to get the street-lamp switched off for five years. PHOTO: Sarah Burgess

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A community has breathed a sigh of relief after a faulty street lamp, which burned for six years straight, was finally switched off.

Richard Bonham, is one of many Star Farm Close residents who have been trying to get the street-lamp switched off for five years. PHOTO: Sarah BurgessRichard Bonham, is one of many Star Farm Close residents who have been trying to get the street-lamp switched off for five years. PHOTO: Sarah Burgess

The lamppost, which stands in a small car park within Star Farm Close in Bradwell, was described as a "real bugbear of the community" by Richard Bonham, who lives nearby.

Multiple residents contacted various bodies to have the lamppost fixed, but Mr Bonham said each one said another was responsible.

"I could see it from my window, and it infuriated me because it's a gross waste of energy and money", he said.

"I know the exact date I moved here - July 30, 2015 - because that's the date I first noticed the lamp switched on in the middle of the day."

Ownership of the offending plot of land in Star Farm Close is contested by various bodies, with Broadland Housing Association finally sending an engineer to fix the light despite maintaining it is Norfolk County Council's responsibility to do so.  PHOTO: Sarah BurgessOwnership of the offending plot of land in Star Farm Close is contested by various bodies, with Broadland Housing Association finally sending an engineer to fix the light despite maintaining it is Norfolk County Council's responsibility to do so. PHOTO: Sarah Burgess

Another resident, who lives in the house directly behind the light, said it shone in her bedroom during the day and "did her head in" when she had a headache.

She added: "My little boy is six now, and it's been burning since the day he was born."

Both Norfolk County Council and Great Yarmouth Borough Council, who say they do not own the land the offending lamppost sits on, suggested it might be the responsibility of two housing associations which operate in the area - Flagship Housing Association and Broadland Housing Association.

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But neither believes the issue falls within their remit.

Flagship Housing said its land stopped just a few inches shy of the lamppost, and although Broadland Housing Association appears to manage the stretch of road on the Land Registry, it says the responsibility for the lamppost belongs to Norfolk County Council.

A spokesperson for Broadland Housing said: "We strongly believe that a Section 38 Agreement was signed with Norfolk County Council, which states they have 'adopted' control of the road, including the lights.

"However, they seem to have no record of that, so we're trying to track down the documentation and ascertain who exactly has ownership of this lamp going forward."

The group said it was not aware it was an issue with tenants, but has now agreed to "send an engineer to fix the issue".

And by Tuesday, the lamp had finally been switched off - though the question of who owns it remains unsolved.

Mr Bonham said: "I can't believe it's really off, after goodness knows how long."

UK Power Network, which supplies power to lighting in the east of England, said that lampposts tend to be "unmetered" or unregulated connections, which means it is impossible to know how much money has been spent powering an individual street light over time.


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