The lighting on The Willow Gardens has been much improved and extended over the years, the first change being the switch to low energy lamps more than twenty years ago, giving better and more reliable lighting. Then we started to add additional lights, first to the parking areas and then to the garage areas making these areas much more user friendly, especially on those dark winter evenings. In fact we feel that we have eliminated all dark areas on the estate. Our next concern was the reliability of the power supplies for all the estate lighting. As the estate is nearly forty years old we had been getting more and more faults leaving courtyards without lighting. This is almost always due to an underground junction box where the rubber seals have deteriorated over the years and has allowed moisture to enter. So rather than dig up the estate looking for junction boxes, as we locate a box during normal fault finding, the cabling is moved and/or modified so that the boxes can be located above ground. You may have noticed the square silver coloured boxes just above ground level with two or three cables going into them. This has made a big improvement in reducing the number of faults.
Our next challenge was how to improve the lighting within each courtyard and at the same time have a different power supply so that when we do have a lighting fault, at least the courtyard itself is not left in darkness. The parking and garage areas do receive some illumination from the street lighting. The answer we came up with as being the most cost effective was to fit an automatic porch light to each three bedroom house in the courtyards. This gave us the extra lighting we needed and was completely independent of the estate lighting, we had approval rate of about 95% to supply and fit these lights at the Managements expense, although on some houses it was not possible and two or three refused to have them. We think that this has proved to be highly effective in increasing the lighting in the courtyards and even more so when we have had a lighting fault. This project was completed in 2008.
At present, Ted Sofocli looks after the estate and porch lighting. He goes round the estate about once a month on average, (something he’s done for the last thirty five years!), checking lighting, changing bulbs and reporting circuit faults to an approved electrician for repair (who’s been here for over twenty years!). As you can see, we’re in for the long haul!
Finally, should your porch light not work or stays on all day, or should you notice that the estate lighting has failed in some part, (not just a single bulb, please), then please contact Ted. You can find out how to contact him on the Contact Us page.