If you experience a problem with artificial lighting that causes you disturbance, affects the enjoyment of your property or harms your health you may be able to take action by reporting it to us.

You should always try to solve the problem by talking to whoever is responsible for the light before contacting us. 

You can read our neighbour nuisance guide to find general advice on your rights and the law. 

What we can investigate 

Artificial light can be classed as a statutory nuisance. We can investigate if it substantially interferes with the use or enjoyment of your home or is likely to injure health.

You can report problems if the artificial light is excessive and shining into your home. 

We will take a range of factors into account. This includes: 

  • duration 
  • frequency 
  • how the light affects your personal comfort and use of your home  
  • local environment 
  • whether the person causing the light is behaving unreasonably 
  • whether the average person would be affected by the light 

What we cannot investigate 

There are many premises that shine bright lights that are exempt from the law.  

These are places where high levels of light are necessary for safety and security reasons. This includes: 

  • airports 
  • public service vehicle operating centres 
  • goods vehicle operation centres 
  • railway premises 
  • prisons 
  • bus stations and facilities 
  • premises occupied for defence purposes 

How to report it 

You can report light nuisance using our online form. 

Make sure you include:  

  • your name and contact details 
  • a detailed description of the problem  
  • the location of the problem  
  • how often it has happened 

The more evidence you can provide of the problem you are experiencing and the impact it is having on you, the easier it is for us to respond and find a resolution. 

What happens next 

We will contact you to discuss the complaint within 10 working days. Cases where there is the potential for a significant risk to public health will be prioritised.

We do not respond to light complaints out of hours. 

How to avoid causing light pollution

If you are installing outdoor lighting you need to consider whether: 

  • the lighting is really necessary 
  • the light will affect others (direction of the beam) 
  • the lights need to be on all the time 
  • security could be better achieved in another way 
  • sensors can be set to avoid accidental triggering 
  • the proposed lighting is too powerful for the intended use 

You should take steps to prevent lights becoming a nuisance and to be considerate to neighbouring houses. 

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