The council can investigate complaints of nuisance from light. Abatement notices can be served by the Council if light, for example from domestic security lights, is causing a nuisance. For light to be a nuisance it would have to materially affect someone's use of their home, or their health, based on average sensibilities. Some commercial premises are exempt from this legislation, for example tramway/bus premises and goods vehicle operating centres.
If you are affected by light from a neighbouring property we would suggest that you speak to your neighbour in the first instance and ask them to adjust the lighting.
Complainants are advised to keep a record of the times and the duration of alleged nuisance should they wish to pursue the matter further. If problems are not resolved an officer will investigate whether, in their opinion, the light is causing a nuisance.
How to avoid causing light pollution
- Do not fit unnecessary lights
- Do not use excessively bright lights, a 150 watt tungsten halogen lamp is quite adequate, 300 or 500 watt bulbs are too powerful for domestic security lighting
- Do not leave lights on when they are not needed, consider controlling lights with passive infra-red detectors, ensuring that they are correctly aligned and installed. For a porch light that is going to be left on all night, a nine watt compact fluorescent lamp is normally adequate.
London Borough of Merton
Merton Civic Centre
Telephone: 020 8545 3025