A money-saving scheme to replace Doncaster’s 33,000 street lights with hi-tech lamps has been approved by council chiefs.

The current lights will be replaced with LED lanterns over the next two years, with hopes they will provide better lighting while also reducing energy usage, carbon emissions and maintenance costs.

They will cost £10 million to install but save the authority £1.6m in running costs every year.

The council must save £109m to meet Government-imposed budget cuts over the next three years.

Doncaster Council’s cabinet approved the scheme after hearing of the range of benefits.

Councillor Bill Mordue, Doncaster Council’s cabinet member for highways, said the investment was sensible as it would pay off in the long run.

He said: “The new lanterns last far longer than existing lamps - up to 20 years as opposed to the current six to eight year lifespan.

“A centrally managed computer system will make it possible to monitor and control each individual street light, so we will know if a lamp is faulty without the need for the public to report it to us.

“And because we will be able to control the direction of light with LEDs, there will be less light pollution both into the atmosphere and into people’s properties.”

LEDs will be fitted on to existing lampposts, an approach which is designed to minimise any disruption to residents and businesses.

The new lighting can be controlled from a central location which means, for example, emergency services could request lighting levels in a particular area to be raised temporarily to deal with any urgent issues such as traffic or police incidents.

The light given out by the lamps is also said to be clearer than the existing yellow lamps, making road markings, signs and colours easier for drivers to see.

Work is due to begin at the end of the year.

The council has reassured residents and business owners that they will be kept informed of when the work is going to be carried out in their area.

Funding for the new lanterns will come mainly through an interest free loan of money from a Government-backed organisation called SALIX.

It supports major schemes that make significant environmental improvements.