ALMOST £1m has been found to pay for new street lights in Kirklees.

The £995,000 fund, agreed by councillors yesterday, will allow 1,500 ageing lamps to be upgraded to modern energy efficient ones.

The council is currently halfway through a 10-year programme, costing about £460,000 per year.

With 50% of streetlights already beyond their 25-year life expectancy, their are fears that bad weather and high winds could cause some to fall over.

With the old orange lamps costing the council an extra £90,000 in electricity and maintenance each year, the rush to replace them has accelerated.

Clr Peter McBride said the new lights presented a fantastic return on investment of about 10%.

He added: “This seems like a very good investment for the council in looking after our long term future.

“There’s huge savings in terms of costs and maintenance and wish we had the money to do a lot more.”

The new batch of upgrades represents about 3% of Kirklees Council’s total number of streetlights.