Festive lights cancelled - because of health and safety

Reporter:

Matt Jones

CHRISTMAS has been cancelled in a Flintshire village because of health and safety.

Scottish Power has been branded “Scrooge” for standing in the way of villagers in Drury from putting up Christmas lights for the first time because they denied a request to fix brackets on electricity poles in the village.

The move has been branded as “ridiculous” by community leaders.

County councillor Mike Peers represents the village and along with Cllr Dennis Hutchinson has been fighting to bring some Christmas cheer to residents.

He said: “This is health and safety gone mad. People have come to us requesting lights in the village.

“We were told by Flintshire Council that we had the wrong kind of lampposts for Christmas lights so we decided to put the lights from building to building.

“We have sought professional advice and it seemed feasible we would have them this year. It feels like Christmas won’t happen in the village for some residents.”

Villagers were set to raise money to fund the lights and the plan had been given the backing of Flintshire Council’s head of lighting.

Cllr Peers said: “We needed to fix the brackets to the poles to support the lights.
Scottish Power said it was not possible. It seems ridiculous. People in the village are desperate to get lights up and brighten up the place. We are doing everything we can. We have not had them before but that does not mean we should not try.

“We will be battling to get the lights up next year.”

“It is not too late. We can’t see what the problem is. We want them to know what their decision means to a community desperate for lights.”

Cllr Hutchinson said: “They are acting like scrooge. For many years we have had a Christmas carol concert for the communities of Drury and Burntwood.

“It has always been successful and the lights would have really set the concert off.

“For Scottish Power to say no, it is very mean of them.

“People were really looking forward to the lights.”

A spokeswoman for Scottish Power said: “We would say no to this request on health and safety grounds.”

See full story in the Leader

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