LED street lights help councils with their savings targets

Published on 20/10/2016

Councils across the country are rolling out LED street lights which are saving them millions of pounds on their energy bills.


LED street lighting, which has seen a recent marked spike in demand, has been around for some time now with most councils having at least one trial of LED street lighting within their community. Because of the improved energy efficiency of the LED units, councils adopting their use have seen some impressive savings on the energy being consumed compared to the traditional sodium SOX and SON lighting. Examples vary, but cost savings of 50% have been reported compared to traditional lighting.

To speed up purchasing of LED street lights, a number of councils have opted to use framework agreements. ESPO offers a framework dedicated to LED street lighting and associated products and services, which is free of charge to access. Any specification can be catered for by running 'mini competitions' under the framework, meaning the very latest technology can be accessed.

One such authority is Hull City Council. They ran their own mini competition under ESPO’s framework 59A to procure up to 30 watt and up to 70 watt premium grade LED luminaires. Leila Oxtoby, who is managing the LED rollout project for Hull Council said:

“Hull City Council plan to install around 33,000 LED luminaires over a period of 2 years.  This is a 'spend to save' project that will potentially deliver savings of up to £1.6m per annum, through a reduction in costs, including maintenance, energy and carbon emissions.  Running a mini competition through the ESPO framework allowed us to run an efficient procurement process; and gain the benefits we sought after in terms of quality and price.”

Adopting LED street lighting technology presents a ‘quick win’ opportunity for councils to help with their savings targets. The payback period is relatively short and the savings substantial.


Did you know?


  • ESPO’s 59A framework offers Central Management Systems (CMS), which are used to centrally control and set dimming regimes for groups of street lights. This option is popular with many councils as it helps to maximise the savings available from the LED street lights.
  • Retrofit LEDs are a great option available on our framework for those authorities who don’t wish to make the full leap to LED but wish to see what benefits they can bring and how the public will react to the new style of light. The existing lighting unit is retained, but the internal workings are replaced with an LED gear tray. Any street furniture fitted with a traditional light bulb or fluorescent tube could be suitable for retrofit.
  • Authorities without budget to invest up-front may still be able to benefit from the technology, with interest free loans available from certain funding organisations for energy efficient projects. 


Related frameworks:

Highways Electrical Connections and Minor Installation Works (256)

Street Lighting Columns, Traffic Signal Posts and Street Lighting Equipment (257)

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