A ROW over plans to switch off thousands more street lights across Caerphilly county borough has intensified, with council’s Plaid Cymru group being branded “completely hypocritical” for calling for a review.

The party’s councillors are backing a motion for a review of the early morning hours switch-off decision.

They have backed the Independent Group motion, despite turning off street lights overnight when they led the county borough council in 2010.

However, in a letter written earlier this year by the leader of Caerphilly’s Plaid group, Cllr Colin Mann, he said there was a difference between switching off lights in between communities and within “the heart of communities”.

In 2010, the Plaid group made the decision to turn off street lighting on out-of-town roads and bypasses and on industrial estates.

The letter said that the ruling Labour group’s decision had caused “anxiety” for residents.

It said: “While we do support efforts to tackle the climate emergency, Plaid Cymru cannot support action which makes people feel more vulnerable in their own homes.”


A Labour group spokesman said: “Finally, the Plaid group have acknowledged that when they controlled the council they started the process of switching off street lights between 12 midnight and 5:30am.

“It’s completely hypocritical to switch street lights off in power and oppose them being switched off when in opposition”

Labour councillor Jamie Pritchard said “It would be wrong to ignore the the environmental factors behind the current street lighting policy.

“I challenged the opposition to come forward with their alternative street lighting proposal at the council’s budget meeting earlier this year, but both Plaid Cymru and the Independents had nothing to offer.”

The council has already switched off 14,200 lights from midnight-5am to help the climate emergency, and a further 8,495 will follow by the end of this year, a plan that has generated more than 200 complaints.

A motion to review this decision will be considered by a scrutiny committee next Thursday, October 1.