Shine a light on criminals

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A Sudbury councillor has urged residents to report anti-social behaviour in areas where street lights have been turned off to the police.

Nigel Bennett, chairman of the Sudbury and Great Cornard Safer Neighbourhood Team, says the police need to be informed so they can advise Suffolk County Council about switching lights back on if needed.

All main roads and crucial traffic junctions should be lit but, as a result of a decision taken last year by Suffolk County Council to cut costs, street lights elsewhere have been switched off during the night.

This includes places like Upper East Street where a resident, who asked not to be named, said the lights should be kept on due to it being such a well-used thoroughfare.

He said the street is used by large numbers of people on their return from nights out in the town who were now “roaming about” in the dark.

Town clerk Sue Brotherwood said: “This is the first I have heard about this problem but obviously the town council would be concerned to hear about this.”

She said it would be discussed by the Safer Neighbourhood Team at its next meeting in mid-September.

Mr Bennett said: “With a street like this, if it’s a significant route home for people and traffic and the police were aware of issues, it might be possible to get the street lights turned back on.

“It was always my understanding that Suffolk County Council is able to turn lights on and off very quickly and that with sufficient evidence it is possible to make such changes.

“At the end of the day, I would urge any residents who have concerns to get in touch with the police and also to let the council know.”

A spokeswoman for the county council said an electrical services manager would be reviewing any issues in Upper East Street and confirmed that, where there was a good case, street lighting could be reinstated.