CONCERNS have been raised that the responsibility for street lighting in Norton could be transferred to the town council.

Members were previously told that Ryedale District Council (RDC) intended to cease responsibility for footway lighting in Norton from April 2018.

However, a meeting due to take place at Ryedale House to discuss the matter had been cancelled due to questions raised as to the ownership of the lights.

The town council was told the district council was looking at adopt 194 light units.

Councillor Ray King, mayor of Norton, said he and the deputy clerk, Tim Hicks, had carried out a survey of the street lights and been shocked by the condition of them.

“I can quite understand why the district council wish to discontinue maintaining them,” he said.

“Some of the columns are in a shocking state. We found three colours and three different designs, in one street, while in another there was a light held together with tape.”

Councillors were told the lighting of public roads was a discretionary power for local councils and that no record had been found that Norton Town Council ever owned the lights.

Cllr King said he felt it was too big a liability for the town council to undertake responsibility for.

“The costs would be immense and there is no consistency to the style of the street columns.We must do whatever we can to resist any moves to transfer the maintenance of the lights to the town council,” he said.

Cllr Di Keal, who is also a district councillor, said she had not been aware of any moves by the authority regarding street lights.

“This would be a massive drain on our resources and if they are trying to give us responsibility for this what also are they thinking of giving us,” she said.

The town council is now waiting for a further response from RDC.