A COUNCIL has defended its decision to put up fewer Christmas lights than normal due to health and safety fears.
Managers of Broadmead Shopping Centre in Bristol have complained that the number of lights now on display is only 15% of last year's total.
The lack of festive decorations has attracted criticism from disgruntled shoppers.
Bristol Council says a fault in the fittings meant that the lights intended to create a glow could not go up on health and safety grounds.
But Broadmead manager John Hirst said the lack of lights was causing problem for shoppers and shopkeepers alike.
He said: "I've been deluged with complaints about this.
"Everyone loves it when the lights are up. It creates a nice, warm Christmas feeling.
"But the council have identified a problem and public safety is paramount, so there is nothing we can do."
A council spokeswoman said the difficult decision to cut the number of lights was to protect the public.