Residents are having to use their porch lights to illuminate Tolsford Road.
Photograph: courtesy local resident

Residents are urging people to report places they feel are unsafe after they complained repeatedly about lights shutting off in the afternoon, just as the nights were drawing in.

They highlighted the problem on Tolsford Road, which is part of the Pembury Estate, run by Peabody. It saw lights going off at around 4pm and residents having to put on their porch lights to illuminate the area.

The caretaker and locals reported the problem on their part of the estate, which has blocks of maisonettes, seven times over the last month.

Resident Jane Hurley said: “Lights are on during the day and go off at around 4pm, wasting energy and money.

“The residents of Tolsford Road are now turning on porch lights at night, in order to have some light on the road.  We are therefore paying twice to light our own street, through rent/service charge and our own household bills.”

She said residents were concerned about their safety and one neighbour told her they “avoided walking down Tolsford Road because it was dark”.

“There are elderly and disabled people living here and people with children,” Hurley added.

She said she has raised the issue with the landlord Peabody several times, fearing that “someone could potentially be attacked because of low lighting”.

Lights are on during the day and then shut off at around 4pm. Photograph: courtesy local resident

She said: “People are in the dark and eating energy having the lights on in the daylight. The first issue is safety and we have brought this up every single time.

“In the light of the recent attacks on women it is a matter of safety.”

Hurley is also concerned about the risk of people tripping over in the dark.

A spokeswoman for Peabody said: “We are aware that the lights have not being going on at night. It is important to us that our residents feel safe and we are investigating to find out why they are not going on at night as they should. We hope to find a solution as soon as possible.”

Hurley urged people to report any issues or places which they think need attention.

Hackney Council launches 16 days of campaigning tomorrow to improve the safety of women and girls.

The councillor in charge of community safety, Susan Fajana-Thomas, is encouraging people living and working in Hackney to tell them about places where they would like to see action to make the borough safer for everyone.

It is holding a survey that goes live tomorrow and runs until 25 January.

It could include measures such as cutting back overhanging plants, boosting lighting or looking at CCTV.

The Town Hall is also talking to Transport for London to look at bus stops and train stations to see if they need attention.

The council said: “The survey is open to all residents to have their say and raise any issues affecting the safety of women and girls. It will allow us to better understand your concerns, perceptions and experiences. If you live, work, study or socialise in Hackney, we’d like to hear from you.”

Take part in the survey at Hackney Women’s Safety | Commonplace.

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