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Conservative-run Devon County Council is planning to switch off 8,700 street lights between 12.30am and 5.30am. Given that the Council has 75,000 street lights this might seem a modest proposal. But it would save £450,000 a year on the Council's energy bill. It would also save around 4,000 tons of carbon. Increasing numbers of councils are turning off the lights, or dimming them with successful results.

John Coates, chairman of Aveton Gifford Parish Council, says:

"The change has been very well received and switching the lights off overnight is much more suited to a rural community.

"The environment was the driving factor behind approaching the county council for part-night lighting but when we heard the figures on money and power savings, the attraction was even greater.

"Safety has been considered as there's still a light at the subway which stays on all night, but we're enjoying the star-lit nights."

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