Streetlight finds a new home with Cameron
Wiltshire Council's streetlighting contractors Ringway Wiltshire have presented local enthusiast, Cameron Hutcheson with a customised version of his favourite Thorn Gamma 6 Streetlight.
Cameron aged 19 lives in Chippenham and is studying Creative Media Production at Wiltshire College. He has had an interest in streetlights since a child and realising that the Council's two year programme to replace all streetlights would remove a historic range of streetlights he began capturing images across the County to record the diversity. He has now amassed almost 10,000 images detailing a unique history of Wiltshire streetlighting and the challenge is now on as he works hard to capture remaining streetlights before the Wiltshire LED project is completed in November.
A chance meeting in Melksham between Cameron, his Mum Sarah Hutcheson, and Wiltshire Council officer Joanne Heal, Traffic and Network Manager at Wiltshire Council while they were out taking photographs revealed his interest and his efforts to capture a record of streetlighting in the Wiltshire.
Joanne became aware that Cameron would love to own one of the older lamps he was cataloguing, but with the age and condition of them knew that this might not be possible. Recognising the depth of Cameron's knowledge and interest Joanne contacted Ringway Wiltshire who are undertaking the LED conversion project to see if they could assist.
Cameron's favourite design of light is the Thorn Gamma 6, but after years of use they become very brittle and usually break when taken down. After learning of Cameron's passion Ringway engineers tried for several months before finally managing to remove one intact and a member of staff undertook to convert it to a lamp.
Mick Buckler, Divisional Manager at Ringway Wiltshire said, "We were proud to meet and present to Cameron with a customised version of his favourite Thorn Gamma 6 lantern. The one-off piece is a result of resourceful reclamation work by Ringway Streetlighting Supervisor Andy Butlin.
As the LED conversion project was already 50% complete. Cameron's concerns about the rarity of the unit were justified and it was sometime before a complete shade was recovered. Andy volunteered out of hours to create the custom piece, a local memento of the unique task Cameron, with support from his family has undertaken.
Cameron also shared with us a slideshow of some of the images he had taken, and it is true to say they show a huge variety even just on a single street."
Cllr Dr Mark McClelland, Cabinet Member for Street Scene said, "It's fair to say Cameron and his mum have travelled far and wide over the last two years, cataloguing the different types of lighting in the county and creating a unique and fascinating record the history of Wiltshire streetlighting. After November Wiltshire's streetlights will be far more uniform, with only Heritage lamps remaining. The majority of streetlighting will be replaced with more energy efficient and environmentally friendly LED lighting."
Cameron has a number of photo credits for his streetlight images and shares his photos with other enthusiasts via Instagram @wiltshirestreetlights