Street lighting

Oxfordshire County Council

VolkerHighways is working on a five-year highway electrical assets contract with Oxfordshire County Council, which began in 2021.

Street lighting

What we are doing

As part of the contract, we deliver all aspects of street lighting maintenance covering 4,500km of highway along A roads, B roads and rural and urban roads. We provide planned and reactive street lighting assets maintenance, inspections, testing, replacement of aged lighting columns and LED upgrades.

We maintain approx. 60,000 street lights and over 6,000 illuminated signs, bollards and other lighting equipment. 

Our services are also provided to District, Parish and Town Councils.


Switching to LED

We have completed the first residential and traffic route LED and column replacement scheme. This involved converting approximately 32,500 lanterns to LEDs and swapping 16,670 columns to improve the energy efficiency of the council’s street lighting assets.

We are now working on phase two of the column replacement scheme which involves replacing 2,800 columns.

By switching to LEDs, total annual savings of almost 2,443,347kg CO2* has been made.

*Based on change of inventory from January 2022 to date.

School engagement

In the community

Placing our community at the heart of our works, we prioritise the employment of local people, work with local supply chain partners and maximise our community contribution through social value activities. 

We are working with local schools and colleges in Oxfordshire to inspire and empower the next generation to pursue rewarding careers in construction. Read about our latest Open Doors event.

We have an ongoing partnership with Helen & Douglas House children’s charity, who help families cope with the challenges of looking after a terminally ill baby or child who will die prematurely. We installed two solar street lighting columns and converted four other lanterns to LEDs as a gesture of goodwill, helping to reduce their energy consumption and costs. We also donated much needed funds to the charity, provided Easter Eggs for their Easter Play and Stay and volunteered our time as part of a street collection initiative. 



We work with our supply chain to source, trial and implement innovative solutions to improve efficiencies and reduce our carbon emissions, while maintaining quality. 

  • We built a bespoke digital app for delivering schemes, helping us to visualise each work activity including its status and progress pictures. This ensures the client has live information they can access at any time, digitating our processes, improving efficiencies and eliminating paperwork.
  • Exploring ways of reducing carbon emissions in works activity, we trialled the use of a 100% Electric Mobile Elevated Work Platform (MEWP). The MEWP was used on site for 5 days for 5-6 hours per day. The MEWP has a potential lifetime saving of 73,032kg of CO2.
  • We trialled a combined solar and wind powered street lighting column which can be positioned away from mains power, avoiding extensive trenching, and generates power throughout the year, through solar panels and wind exposure. The innovative street light went on trial for two weeks and contained a CMS transmitter, enabling data to be collected every 15 minutes. 

Industry recognition

Our collaborative partnership with Oxfordshire County Council has been verified through BSI ISO 44001 Collaborative Business Relationship standard, which was achieved in 2023.

We achieved a Distinction Status at the International Safety Awards from the British Safety Council reflecting the business’ ongoing commitment to health, safety and wellbeing during the 2023 calendar year. VolkerHighways was one of 269 organisations from around the world to be awarded the Distinction status

The County Council is looking forward to working with VolkerHighways, to deliver the maintenance and upgrade of our street lighting assets within Oxfordshire. These are exciting times, as we change the existing assets to LED units, saving the authority 15,000,000kWh of energy and delivering a reduction of 2,600 tonnes of CO2.

Councillor Tim Bearder Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways Management