Apply for a decorative lighting consent

What is it for

This consent grants permission to erect, test, operate and remove lighting on, or over, the highway.

Who can apply

Anyone can apply, but you must comply with the terms and conditions of the consent as listed below.

Consent will only be granted to the individual or firm making the application. It cannot be transferred to any other person or firm.

Before you apply

When applying for the decorative lights consent it is a requirement that the applicant shall hold £5 million public liability insurance.

To enable us to process your application please upload the following documentation with a plan showing the precise location where the lighting is to be erected.

When the application is reviewed, if required, you may be asked to provide the following additional documentation;

  • A risk assessment
  • Signing and guarding proposals

Note: Failure to provide appropriate supporting documentation will delay the processing of your application.


The applicant should allow ten clear working days between the date of application and the date on which the consent is intended to commence. No decorative lights should be erected before approval of the application has been issued.

Conditions of consent

Made under Section 178 of the Highways Act 1980.

Conditions of consent

Made under Section 178 of the Highways Act 1980

  1. The lighting shall be placed so as to avoid undue obstruction and interference with users of the highway and at least 5.2m clear of the highest point of the public highway (including a publicly maintainable precinct or similar) or 3.5m clear of the highest point of a footway or similar. If the lighting comprises of single items which do not span the highway then 3.5m is acceptable. Lights below 3m high must not exceed 25v SELV, safety extra low voltage must be used and any tree protected with barriers
  2. The lighting shall be designed and erected and maintained with due regard to a comprehensive risk assessment. Such risk assessment shall take particular account of the erection, maintenance and removal of the lighting and the effect of and on all types of traffic that will pass under or nearby the lighting. Proof of compliance with such may be required by the Highway Authority prior to granting the consent and at any point in the duration of the consent
  3. The erection, removal and maintenance of any lighting shall be signed and guarded at all times, in accordance with the requirements described in the Safety at Street Works and Road Works Code of Practice "Red Book". The Highway Authority may require signing and guarding proposals prior to the approval of the consent
  4. No part of the highway shall be excavated without obtaining the prior express and specific permission of the Highway Authority
  5. The applicant shall ensure that the lighting does not cause a danger or nuisance to the public
  6. Except where agreed as part of this consent no part of the highway may be closed at any time without the express and specific consent of the Highway Authority
  7. Any request for an extension to the period for which the consent has been granted must be made by submitting a further application to the Highway Authority at least 48 hours (excluding Saturday and Sunday and Bank Holidays) prior to the expiry of the existing consent
  8. The applicant shall indemnify the Highway Authority against all liability, loss, claim or proceeding whatsoever arising under the statute or common law which may arise from the placing or maintaining of lighting over the highway or its removal therefrom
  9. The applicant shall hold public liability insurance for the duration of the consent in an amount not less than £5 million in respect of each and every occurrence or series of occurrences caused by or attributable to any event giving rise to a claim
  10. The applicant shall accept liability for any damage caused to the highway or street furniture by the lighting or by the erection, removal or maintenance of the lighting and any such damage shall be repaired to the satisfaction of the Highway Authority at the expense of the applicant
  11. Any alterations to lighting shall cause the consent to be withdrawn unless the Highway Authority first agrees such alterations. Where such alterations are to be made the applicant shall seek the consent of the Highway Authority in writing giving full details of the alterations proposed
  12. Nothing in this consent permits the applicant to interfere with or prevent or restrict access to apparatus owned, used or maintained by Statutory Undertakers
  13. It is the applicant’s responsibility to obtain the necessary permission from any property owners to which the lighting will be attached or overhang. Where the lighting is attached to such property the applicant shall be responsible for any damage caused to property by the lighting whilst the lighting is present, including during erection maintenance and removal of the lighting
  14. No part of the lighting shall be attached to any street furniture or lighting column without separate written express and specific permission from the Highway Authority. Where such permission is granted the applicant shall comply with all conditions attached to the permission
  15. Nothing in this consent absolves the applicant from obtaining Planning Permission where such is required
  16. The consented lighting shall not advertise any event product or business that is of a commercial nature except as follows: Any firm or association, or similar, paying for the lighting to be erected in a publicly maintainable precinct may incorporate their name or logo as part of the lighting provided that the wording or logo size and content are agreed with the local planning authority and the Highway Authority in accordance with the Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisements) (England) Regulations 2001 or any amendment thereto or superseding legislation
  17. Hampshire Highway Authority, Street Lighting Policy Document 2001 Chapter 8, covers further, technical requirements for the erection of decorative lighting. The following is non-exhaustive and for the full details the applicant must refer to the Policy Document:
    (a) All apparatus shall be erected, maintained and removed in compliance with the following statutes and regulations:
    • Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
    • Electricity-at-Work Regulations 1989
    • BS 7671 Regulations for Electrical Installation
    b) In addition to clause 17 (a):
    • An agreed set of inspection/emergency procedures is to be provided to the local highway management office
    • Each installation shall be tested and the electrical test certificates and test results passed to the highway management office on the day following installation to energising
    • A qualified structural engineer with professional indemnity must certify the installation
    • No installation shall be permitted where it may be in conflict with any adjacent traffic signal system
  18. The applicant shall:
    (a) Carry out an inspection of the lighting at least every week to satisfy themselves as to all aspects of its security and safety. The results of these inspections shall be documented and records held for 6.5 years. Nil returns are to be recorded in the same manner
    (b) Inform the Highway Authority, of the name, address and telephone number of an electrician who can be called out on a 24 hour a day basis to deal with emergencies. The costs incurred in any such emergencies shall be borne by the applicant. Such an electrician shall hold a City & Guilds approved qualification or its equivalent and be fully conversant with the requirements of all relevant standards
  19. Additional conditions for lights in publicly maintained "living" trees:
    (a) The lights must be attached to the tree in a way that doesn't damage the tree.
    (b) No pruning will be carried out to the tree to facilitate attachment of the lights.
    (c) The licence holder should be aware that they could be implicated in any claims resulting from subsequent tree failure.
    (d) For festive lighting, the lights must be installed during November at the earliest and removed before the end of January.
    (e) If any festive lighting is present between January and November, the Highway Authority may remove and dispose of them without warning.
    (f) If the Highway Authority needs to work on a tree during November through January and damage occurs, the Highway Authority will accept no liability for damage to the lights.


  • The ‘highway’ can include the carriageway, footway and any verge
  • If the applicant objects to these conditions or a refusal by the highway authority, to approve a consent then he may appeal to the magistrates’ court

The approval process

On receipt of your application an engineer will asses the site to determine its suitability.

If consent is provided then further approval may be required from Enerveo if the lights are to be attached to or receive power from a lamp column.

Please note: Enerveo will no longer be able to give approval for third party attachments on any cast iron columns. This will include, festive lighting, hanging baskets, banners, cameras or any additional signs.

Cast iron columns can be difficult to identity. Some cast iron style columns may look like cast iron but are actually steel with embellishments added to give the illusion of age.

It is the applicant’s responsibility to obtain this approval from Enerveo. Visit the Enerveo website.

  • £92
  • Per consent

If you would like to cancel your application after submission, you may not be entitled to a full refund if work has already commenced to process it.

You will receive an automated receipt when paying for this service. No VAT is charged as this is a non-business service and the VAT is classed as ‘out-of-scope’. However, should it be required for your records, Hampshire County Council’s VAT number is GB 189 4068 22.


If you're happy you understand the conditions and charges. 

Upon application you will be required to pay the fee. Please have your payment details ready before submitting your application.