Hampshire dims thousands of street lights as part of Lights Out for WWI
Friday, 01 Aug 2014
In August 1914, the then Foreign Secretary Edward Grey, when he heard that war was inevitable with Germany famously remarked: "The lamps are going out all over Europe, we shall not see them lit again in our life time."
To commemorate 100 years since the outbreak of the First World War, lights will be going out all over the country. In Hampshire, over 100,000 street lights will be dimmed by the County Council between 10pm and 11pm on Monday 4 August.
Councillor Seán Woodward, Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment at Hampshire County Council said:
"Hampshire will be remembering those who died and the many more who were affected by the First World War - joining in with the national Lights Out event on the night of 4 August, by dimming street lights.
"Hampshire played a key role in WWI as a major embarkation point for troops heading off to the battlefields in Belgium and France and it is fitting that we show our support for The Royal British Legion's campaign. While not completely turning the lights out, the dimming will accentuate the effect of people illuminating a single lamp in their homes or local buildings across the county."
Major traffic routes will be exempt from the commemoration, and some specific street lights will be switched off totally in the vicinity of organised Lights Out events, such as Winchester Cathedral and the War Memorial in Church Crookham.
Hampshire County Council is able to control the dimming of these street lights as its five year replacement and upgrading programme means that a new remote monitoring system can be used. The new lighting is more energy-efficient, providing improved visibility and reducing night-time light pollution.
During the day on 4 August, the Chairman of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Colin Davidovitz, will be hosting a Hampshire Commemorates exhibition in the Great Hall in Winchester showcasing historic materials from Hampshire County Council and other partners, to mark the centenary of WWI. The event is free for all visitors and will run from 10am-5pm.