Protecting Milton Keynes’ Disappearing Heritage

Please note that this is the website of the Milton Keynes Street Lighting Association campaign group. For issues with street lighting in Milton Keynes please contact MK Council highways department on 01908 252353.

Milton Keynes Street Lighting Association is a voluntary organisation that exists to capture, record and protect the unique street lighting that was created and installed by Milton Keynes Development Corporation and its successors between the 1970s and the 1990s. The MKDC planned a complete system of unique, bespoke street furniture for Britain’s largest new town. For several decades this unique system was maintained and expanded, but since the late 2000s new installations have departed from the established style. Now, the introduction of new LED technology threatens to erase this key part of Milton Keynes’ distinctive heritage altogether, unless a change in policy can be achieved. We have a growing body of members including MK residents and people from outside the city who share a serious concern about our disappearing heritage. To join us, please click here.


The globe lantern is one of the most identifiable parts of Milton Keynes’ new town image, now rapidly disappearing. 

Much of the significance of Milton Keynes’ street lighting lies not only in its uniqueness, but also the careful planning that went into creating distinct characters of lighting for each type of installation. Brown square columns with spherical globe lanterns were used for estates and redways, blending in with the trees to give these areas their character. Black circular columns with graceful curves gave a separate image to the city centre, whilst grey octagonal columns form part of the look and feel of the grid road system. These gave each area its own unique feel and it’s that attention to detail and character that has been lost in more recent developments and replacement projects. It is the hope of the creators of this site that future planners and designers working in Milton Keynes and elsewhere will see the effect of that careful composition and will move back towards implementing it once again.

To find out more about the lighting installed in Milton Keynes, please select an option below:

Grid Road Lighting







Estate Lighting







CMK Lighting







All content and images are copyright Thomas Walker and James Bywater, 2018.