Last updated: 1 September 2023

Next review: 1 September 2024

Artificial lighting is important in many areas but, if not carefully designed and installed, can cause nuisance and other adverse environmental impacts. We use the planning system to ensure that new developments include well designed artificial lighting systems that avoid nuisance being caused. We can also take action in some situations if artificial light causes a nuisance.

For more information on the powers that local councils have to deal with artificial lighting, visit the GOV.UK website

What we can help with

Sources of light that may cause problems include:

  • domestic/commercial security lights
  • domestic artificial lighting
  • laser shows,
  • exterior lighting of buildings
  • decorative lighting of landscapes.

What we can't help with

There are exemptions to this, for example, premises used for transport purposes:

  • bus stations
  • railway premises
  • other premises where a high level of light is required for safety and security reasons.

There is a defence of 'best practicable means' which extends to business premises and other relevant outdoor sports facilities.