Read our mini guide on street lighting and traffic signals

There is no legal requirement for local authorities to provide street lighting but we do have a duty to maintain the streetlights that are installed on the adopted highway. This is covered in detail in the Highways Act 1980.

MK City Council is responsible for maintaining over 58,000 streetlights across the borough. We also look after traffic signals, illuminated bollards and signs. With energy costs increasing and our ambition to be carbon neutral by 2030, we are looking at ways to reduce our electricity usage whilst still providing a safe level of street lighting.

Any streetlight or illuminated item on a council-owned road (adopted highway) may be reported to us and we'll get a lighting engineer to check it. Some repairs can be done quick quickly but others may be more complex or costly so will take longer to plan such as cabling faults or damage to a feeder pillar.

You can check if the location of the faulty streetlight is adopted highway on the MyMKMapping tool on our website. Adopted highway is shaded in blue.

Please note that MKCC is not responsible for lights on the A5 or M1, you should contact National Highways to report an issue.

Report a faulty, broken or damaged street light

Please note, if the streetlight you are reporting has recently been upgraded to LED, it will look different to the older, orange sodium glow and it will come on in the evening later than before due to the new sensor. If the light is still off after sunset for a significant amount of time (e.g., over 2 hours) then please report it.

Relocating a street light

Residents and businesses can apply to relocate a street light that is on the adopted highway to help access to a residential driveway or a junction in a new development. Street lights are placed as part of an overall design to provide the right amount of lighting in an area based on the type of road and the environment so this is not always possible. There is a non-refundable fee with this application of £214. This fee includes the processing of the application not the relocation works.

A streetlight relocation may only be carried out by MK City Council and our approved service provider. You must not instruct a third party contractor to carry out this type of work.

Apply now


Festive Lighting

If you want to place any festive lighting, banners or bunting within the public highway you must first apply for permission to the council.

These types of installation can enhance public spaces for the festive periods and help to create a sense of community. However they must be safe, secure and meet our standards otherwise we will not allow them to be installed on our assets.

Read our seasonal lighting code of practice  to find out what minimum standards we require and how you can apply.

Our street lighting team can help to advise you with any technical information and safety checks. Any contractor carrying out works on the public highway must be approved by us.

Any additional weight to a street light column must have a structural test beforehand - the cost of this test will be covered by the applicant. This also includes hanging baskets.

You can get in touch with them by email at or use the Application Form to Install Festive Lights on the Highway


LED Upgrade Programme

The final phase of this programme will start from April 2023 to upgrade the remaining residential estates across MK to LED streetlights.

The estates included in this roll out are listed below. Any existing faults will be picked up during this roll out too including any column (lamppost) replacements.

LED Conversion Programme
Bradville Grange Farm Loughton Lodge Shenley Brook End
Bradwell Great Holm Middleton/MK Village Shenley Church End
Broughton/Broughton Gate Great Linford Monkston Shenley Lodge
Browns Wood Heelands Monkston Park Simpson
Caldecotte Kents Hill Neath Hill Stantonbury including Stantonbury Fields and Stantonbury Campus
Eaglestone Loughton Netherfield Tattenhoe
Crownhill Kingsmead Old Farm Park Westcroft

LED is a more energy efficient type of light that we are rolling out across MK. The light is crisper, brighter and can be targeted just where it is needed. They use less energy and don't need replacing as often as the old orange lights. Also they don't contain any harmful chemicals like sodium and mercury which the older ones do.

We have over 58,000 street lights across Milton Keynes. This is a very high number and we need to reduce our energy bill to save money especially as energy prices are rising.

The grid roads and many estates are already converted to LED and we'll be rolling out the upgrade to other estates over the next few years. Once the LED roll out is complete we’ll be able to save between 50-70% of energy. Good news for us and the environment.

To find out more about LEDs and our upgrade programme, check out our frequently asked questions sheet


Our Service statement on street lighting

We promise to...

  • provide a street lighting service as set out in our code of practice for street lighting maintenance

  • carry out visual checks after dark of all street lights on grid roads, redways and underpasses each month so that any lighting issues are identified, logged and repairs scheduled in

  • respond to reports of street lighting faults in all other areas 

  • provide a 24-hour service and will attend to emergencies within 2 to 24 hours

  • aim to repair a ‘light out’ within 7 days of reporting or for a single light out on a grid road, 28 days

  • carry out structural and electrical testing of street lights annually

'Dayburners' are lights that are on during the day but these are not a safety issue but do show that there is an issue with the sensor that should turn them off at sunrise and back on at sunset. 

The energy usage for each streetlight is pre-set so we don't get charged extra for any dayburners so long as the issue is being addressed. 

We will prioritise dayburners as a ‘Planned Job’ and will plan these into our repair schedule for the next 2-3 months. Dayburning lamps make up 5% of faults repaired. 

For more information and an example of a dayburners have a look at our common street light faults fact sheet.