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Luton Borough Council

Light nuisance

Many light nuisance problems can be dealt with by having a friendly word with your neighbour.

Is light pollution the same as light nuisance?
Light pollution is any form of artificial light which shines outside the area it needs to illuminate. Although light pollution may affect the beauty of the night sky and our view of the stars, it is not always a light nuisance.

What is light nuisance?
Artificial light is essential in our modern society. However, poorly designed, directed and maintained lighting can cause problems. Light nuisance is a source of light which interferes with a person's use of their property or is prejudicial to their health.

How to avoid causing a light nuisance

  • Do not fit unnecessary lights
  • Do not use excessively bright lights. A 150 watt tungsten halogen lamp is adequate. High power (300-500 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
  • Speak to your neighbours to check your lights are not causing a problem

Further advice on installing domestic security lighting issued by the Institute of Lighting Engineers can be downloaded below.

What can I do about light nuisance?
Try to approach your neighbour for a chat about the problem. Try to keep things light-hearted and friendly and explain how the light is affecting you. Politely suggest possible solutions to the problem:

  • re-angle or partially shade the light
  • fit a passive infra red sensor
  • use a lower power bulb

You may find it difficult to speak to your neighbour, but often a neighbour is unaware they are causing a problem.

If the friendly approach doesn't work, contact us to see how we can help.

How can I make a complaint?

  • call 01582 510330, Mon to Fri, 9am to 5pm, except Wed, 10am to 5pm
Contact info
Environmental health
Luton Borough Council, Town Hall, George Street, Luton, Bedfordshire, LU1 2BQ
Tel: 01582 510330


© 2024 Luton Council, Town Hall, Luton LU1 2BQ