Victorian-style lamp stands on the back-burner

Plans to spend up to £50,000 on heritage lamp stands in Berwick have been put on the back-burner for further discussions.

Friday, 27th January 2017, 7:53 am
The Old Bridge in Berwick.

Town councillors have so far been unable to agree where the Victorian-style lamp stands should be placed.

It has now been deferred until next month when clerk Gareth Davies, after further talks with councillors, will come back with a new report on suggested locations and costs.

The original scheme for 15 lamp stands projected the cost of the scheme at £30,000, which was to be taken from non-operational reserves.

It was planned to place eight of them on the Old Bridge, five in the Parade/Barracks area and one on the quayside car park to complement the existing lamp stand on Quay Walls.

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Members were broadly in agreement but the matter was deferred in December when councillors indicated other areas should be considered. Cllr Hazel Bettison called for 11 of the lamp stands to be placed on Spittal Main Street at a cost of a further £22,000.

At Monday night’s meeting of full council, members were advised to put a £50,000 cap on the issue.

They then appeared to rule out the Old Bridge, especially if maintenance work is to be done on it.

Cllr Catherine Seymour said: “It’s a 400-year-old bridge so whether Victorian lampposts will enhance or take away from the bridge is debateable.

“We are not a Victorian town, we are a garrison town. I think the money would be better spent elsewhere.”

Cllr Georgina Hill also felt it was not value for money.

But Cllr Hazel Bettison said the scheme would add character to the town. She insisted, however, that Spittal should be included.

Cllr Gordon McLean suggested Tweed Street would also benefit, while Cllr David Blackburn suggested High Greens.

The lamps, costing £2,000 each, would be installed when new LED lighting is introduced by Northumberland County Council.