How to deal with problems caused by artificial light

If you're experiencing a problem with artificial light, try to contact the source of the problem at the earliest opportunity or carry out mediation before reporting the issue to us.

This is often the best way to resolve a problem.

Speak or write to the source of the problem

You should in the first instance try speaking to the source of the problem, such as a neighbour or business - they may not realise they are causing a problem.

You could also try writing them a letter - you can use our letter template if you're unsure what to write.

Resolving neighbour disputes

You may want to consider contacting Mediation Bucks who offer a free service to assist in resolving disputes between neighbours.

You can find further information about resolving neighbour disputes on GOV.UK, including how you can take action through the courts.

How to report to us

Keep a nuisance diary

If the nuisance continues, you should keep a nuisance diary for at least 2 weeks which shows the time and duration of when the light nuisance occurs. You'll need this if you want to make a formal report to us.

As this is a legal process, we’ll require good evidence of the light you have been experiencing. Without this, it’s unlikely that we’ll be able to process our investigation.

What we can and cannot investigate

We can only take legal action if the light complaint:

  • is ongoing
  • is typically prolonged when it happens
  • directly affects you at your property

We cannot investigate complaints relating to artificial light where high levels of light are necessary for safety and security, including:

  • airports, railway premises or bus stations
  • goods vehicle or public transport operating centres
  • prisons
  • defence premises or premises occupied by visiting armed forces
  • street lights
  • light pollution

If you make a report

Once we’ve received your completed nuisance diary, we’ll review the information to see whether we can investigate further.

Investigations and any enforcement action will be considered on a case-by-case basis. As such, the investigating officer will determine the most appropriate course of action.

Report a light nuisance

You can report a light nuisance online.

You’ll also need to send us your nuisance diary.

Before you make a report, you should think about whether you would be prepared to give evidence in court. You should also be aware that any formal reports may need to be declared in the future.

Report now