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PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2020 9:28 am 
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Examples of the lights below:

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.0314258 ... 384!8i8192

Simplex Aires

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.0317718 ... 312!8i6656

Not the clearest picture, but probably Philips Mi80.

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.0260756 ... 312!8i6656

GEC Z9536/8

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.0269746 ... 312!8i6656

Eleco GR100

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.0255584 ... 384!8i8192

Thorn Beta 5

All these lights still remain in place last time I checked in recent weeks.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:19 pm 
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The conversion to LED in Wiltshire is being prioritised to those areas where re-lamping was carried out longest ago. This has meant that only some areas of Salisbury for instance have been treated, with the crews due to return later this year to finish off. Amesbury on the other hand has been finished entirely and was done before Salisbury.

My village north of Salisbury still retains its discharge lighting. With only about 50 lanterns, I don't think the village has ever been re-lamped entirely in one go, its probably been done piecemeal on a street by street basis, I suspect when one or more lamp fails. There are are usually around 3 failures each winter.

In the last 6 weeks however, there have been 5 failures, an unusually high number and all grouped close together. Looks like the lamps are getting to end of life. There are also a couple more failures of the lighting at the junction with the A road into the village. All have been reported,  I was half expecting that this would bring forward the LED conversion. None have been repaired after a month, so it looks like they will be left until mass LED arrives.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2021 6:13 pm 
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The LED conversion has started in Trowbridge this week. What is bizarre is that they've started on a housing estate that is predominantly SON lit first. There is some SOX in the Estate too, but no failures prior to replacement. Iridiums on 6m columns with brackets are being replaced with post-top Urbis Axia 3s. Most Beta 79s, SGS201s, 2600s and Beta 5s on 5m colums have also been replaced, but the post-top SON Gamma 6s haven't, so I'm wondering if they will fit a different model of lantern here. The newer part of the housing estate which saw Urbis Evolos from new only a few years ago are also being replaced.

Considering the amount of SOX still in use in the town on the side streets, there hasn't been many failures at all, observed from my evening walks. I imagine many lamps are probably not far off failing though. I've tried to take some photos.

The SOX lighting on the main roads is in worse condition, with a fair amount of outages or burning red lamps.

It looks like Westbury has been changed over sometime ago. Bradford-on-Avon is still to be done. It looks like some parts of Melksham have been done but not others.

I do get the impression that had SOX not become obsolete, Wiltshire would've just kept re-lamping until a failure that warranted replacement. It's a sad day that time is almost up for the eclectic mix of SOX lanterns - Including Beta 2s, Beta 5s, Alpha 9s, Gamma 6s, GEC Z9530 range, Z9580s, Z9454s, Z9554s, Z5670/76s, MA90/50s, MI50s, P22x ranges and GR100/150s!

The 1970s Beta 5s have certainly done a grand job over the years. The below was taken this week.

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"I used to rule the world... Now I sweep the streets I used to own."
Remembering GEC.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2021 8:56 pm 
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Good to hear from you again, and about progress in other parts of Wilts.

The Axia 3 is the only lantern they are using as part of the LED conversion, however Lumas and Holophanes that were fitted in the last few years are being retained.

Some concretes that still have original brackets, often get left and then sleeved and LED fitted later.

Its quite surprising how much there is left still to do. I haven't been through Marlborough for 6 months but it hadn't been done at that time, of course things may have changed by now.

Your comment about retaining SOX seems quite plausible, Wilts had looked at LED in the past but ruled it out on terms of cost. It seems the massive ramp up in price of electricity for industrial users is what changed their mind.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 6:22 am 
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The relighting of the A36 trunk road around Salisbury by Highways England continues its glacial pace - still not finished more than a year after it started.

Large sections are dayburning whilst other sections have missing columns, or sections of new lighting that remain unlight. Further evidence of poor planning is the replacement of good condition galvanised sign posts that are under 10 years old with new galvanised sign posts next to them.

Old sections of lighting remain standing and in use, despite new lighting being commissioned next to them.

On the Southampton Road, columns have been removed entirely on the eastbound carriageway yet no new columns have been installed. It may be that the new columns will be on the west bound carriageway only. The entire pavement on the eastbound side is being resurfaced as part of a separate scheme, so this may explain this section of work. Very few of the original columns that were along this stretch of road actually worked as most of the lamps were expired.

Further east past the roundabout for the Bourne retail park (Tescos), the lighting that was installed more than 2 years ago past the new Premier Inn is now finally working after a cable fault was repaired.

In other local news, the Wiltshire council scheme to eradicate discharge lighting with LED is due to return to Salisbury in the next few months and complete those areas that were left untouched from phase 1 of the scheme last summer.

My village has had its six Beta 5s with failed lamps replaced by Axia 3s, some of these have been out of use for more than 4 months. Curiously a perfectly serviceable Beta 79 was also replaced.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 7:28 pm 
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sotonsteve wrote:
I've not seen anything written anywhere, but on a trip to Dorset today I spotted that a number of main roads as well as a few side roads had seen their Iridiums replaced with LED fittings, with some roads featuring Philips Lumas, and others (seemingly more recently) featuring Urbis Axia 3s. It's not just the odd location here and there. There seems to be some sort of strategy or larger programme. Question is, what is the scale of the programme?


I've still not seen anything written about an LED upgrade in Dorset. However, it is worth mentioning that the appearance of Axia 3s is not just limited to the Dorset Council area, but also the former Christchurch Borough part of the new BCP Council. As such, the replacement of Iridiums with Axia 3s is not specific to either of the two new unitary councils that was formed.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 15, 2021 3:50 pm 
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My village to the north of Salisbury today got its remaining discharge lighting replaced by Axia 3s - all apart from 3 Beta 5s. 2 are on pole mounts but are barely 4m from ground level. The poles they are on, have been cut off above the bracket as they used to support electricity cables, but these have been moved to new poles nearby. I suspect both of these wood poles will shortly be replaced with conventional columns.

The other remaining Beta 5 has a LED retrofit lamp in it and is on a 1990s metal column. It's one of a handful in the village that isn't part night and it's bowl is held in place by a cable tie, so its unclear why this wasn't replaced.

All the rest of the 1960s wood pole brackets have been cut back to short stubs and their stay bars removed. The modern pole mounts haven't been cut back. The 3 Lumas were retained. The contractors also carried out some tree cutting where branches were obscuring the lanterns or preventing clear access to control boxes.

Speaking to the contractors, they mentioned that they are almost at the end of the conversion program in Wiltshire. The columns on the A road at the entrance to the village still require conversion.

Elsewhere in Salisbury, the Laverstock area of the city that retained discharge lighting after the first stage of conversion last summer, is now also being converted - it's work in progress with the "more difficult" installations still to do.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:09 pm 
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When I passed through Wootton Bassett a couple of months ago, there was still quite a way to go up there. LED only seemed to have crept in as casual replacements where perhaps lamps or lanterns had failed, and there was still a significant quantity of SOX and SON, which I wasn't expecting to see.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2021 4:47 pm 
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Well a few wrinkles with the new technology...

The 3 remaining Beta 5s got replaced the next day. The 2 pole mounts weren't cut back - presumably as the wood poles were well set back from the road, the delay was caused by needing spigot adapters to fit the lanterns to the (old fashioned) thin tubes.

3 Axias failed to light the first night, this was due to the installations (2 pole mounts and 1 concrete column) failing their supply earth loop impedance tests. This will require Scottish and Southern to rectify, the lanterns are disconnected in the meantime.

There was also difficulty getting the CMS and the nodes to communicate. I knew my village was in a weak signal area, since confirmed by the contractors, but this didn't seem to affect the dozen or so casual replacements already using the CMS. It maybe that the increased level of node traffic, reduced the signal to noise ratio and affected communication.

I've been told that reconfiguration of the CMS was required with fitting of "taller assets" and "additional and revised relays". So it looks like additional master nodes (in higher locations) were fitted, and that the CMS can use a mesh architecture/multiple point to point hops, to ensure reliable communication, rather than just a master slave direct link. All quite advanced.

The reconfiguration of the CMS meant the part night switching all worked last night, only 1 new lantern switched to part night on night 1.

Typically, someone has moaned on social media that the new lighting is too bright. In reality the light distribution is far improved with more light on the road and less back spill into windows. The LEDs are dimmed to 75% brightness 2000 to 2300 and then 50% after that. Yes the LEDs are brighter if you look directly at them!

The lighting now switches off at midnight regardless of whether its BST or GMT, with the old optical NEMAs it was fixed midnight GMT which meant 0100 BST, there was no adjustment for BST.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2021 8:03 pm 
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The Axia 3 is becoming something of a dominant force in the South West and further afield. Aside from Wiltshire, Dorset PFI have been rolling them out to replace a number of main road Iridiums, and they are the new flavour in Devon for their current round of renewals (of course, Devon does sensible size renewals at a continuous rate, unlike the boom and bust of most councils).


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