Restoring heritage lighting on the seafront

Find out how we're restoring our heritage street lanterns.

Project update July 2023

Historic England has given us full approval to restore the first 5 lighting columns. This is an important step that makes sure we preserve the historic and iconic look and feel of the lighting. This will mean using original designs, manufacturing techniques and materials where possible.

We’re expecting planning approval very soon. We hope to have also selected our preferred contractor in August.

We plan to remove and restore the first 5 lamp columns by the end of 2023. We'll use these as the basis for the rest of the project.

If on schedule, the lamp columns will be back in place by March 2024.

Why we're doing this project

In 2020 we inspected 80 of our seafront lighting columns on Marine Parade and Madeira Drive. We found that more than half of them posed a significant health and safety risk.

We took expert advice and consulted with Historic England. 

In October 2020 we removed the brackets and lanterns from 20 columns. We replaced these with temporary replacement lighting. We then removed a further 40 in 2021.

"a rusty and damaged bracket with the sea in the background"

Temporary lighting ensures pavements and roads are well-lit for public safety.

We store the materials until we make decisions on what we can reuse and what may need replacing. We store all materials in steel shipping containers in secure locations.

We look to reuse as many of the materials as possible. Unfortunately, decades of exposure to harsh, salty weather conditions has caused irreparable damage. This may mean we're unable to reuse many of the lanterns.

What we're doing

We began the project to restore Brighton & Hove’s historic seafront lighting in the summer of 2021.

Since then we've removed lanterns that posed a health and safety risk.

The project team has also been investigating the best way to restore the lighting in keeping with Historic England’s requirements.

We've now received Historic England’s approval to proceed with the restoration of the first 5 lighting columns. We expect a planning decision shortly.

We're in the process of engaging a contractor for the project. After this, we'll begin planning the programme of work and timing.

Project funding

The project is being funded with a combination of money from:

  • the council’s Carbon Neutral Fund
  • capital expenditure
  • our streetlighting Invest to Save programme
A streetlight with 2 glass lanterns hanging from a patterned bracket.