ALMOST 10,000 street lights in Bolton have been switched over to new LED lighting.

Work is underway across the borough and about 1,700 streets are now using the lower energy lighting.

Rollout started last April and teams are currently working in Astley Bridge, Blackrod, Bromley Cross, Halliwell, Horwich, Heaton, the town centre, Tonge, Smithills and Westhoughton.

The next areas to benefit from the new lighting will be Little Lever and Lostock. Work is due to start there in June.

The council will also be changing the lights that are located on public footpaths and walkways after Easter.

Bolton Council’s executive cabinet member for environmental services, Cllr Nick Peel, said: “It’s a huge achievement to reach this milestone. We’re more than a third of the way through the programme and some areas such as Westhoughon and Halliwell are almost complete.

“Feedback from the public has been overwhelmingly positive. There have been a few occasions when the crews haven’t been able to replace lights due to issues such as parked cars but we’re addressing this.

“Switching over to LEDs will save money as we will see reduced energy bills, maintenance costs and carbon taxes.”

Approximately 26,000 street lamps on residential streets and main roads are being replaced with lower carbon LED lanterns and work is due to finish in 2018.

The street lighting programme should save the council £14 million over 20 years, and reduce energy use by around 50 per cent.

The lights use less energy and last for longer. An LED lighting unit can last for up to 100,000 hours compared to a standard street light which lasts for around 15,000 hours.

The council spends £2.1 million on energy bills every year, and carbon dioxide emissions cost the council £100k annually.

The new LEDs are also brighter and keep the streets well lit and safe for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers, reducing the chance of accidents and crime. They also improve the quality of images captured at night on CCTV.

The LED lighting is controlled by a wireless Central Management System allowing the lights to be monitored from a central point, which reduces inspection costs and make it easier to repair faults. This system also enables lighting levels to be varied accordingly.

Residents can get more information about the LED programme online