SUNSHINE may be in short supply at this time of year, but a sustainable energy company is hoping a trial of a new solar-powered street light may be the answer to the county’s energy needs.

Sun Air Sustainability Ltd (SAS), based in Bucks, has struck a deal with Gerrards Cross Parish Council to install a six metre light column on East Common, at the bus turning circle on Packhorse Road.

The aim of the column is to create lights that come on at dusk at a low brightness setting, getting brighter and operating for about five hours.

After the time elapses they will come on at a bright setting when there is movement in the vicinity.

The technology is designed for use in car parks, recreation grounds, sports grounds and station platforms which do not require constant lighting.

SAS director Roy Noone said: “By testing in the UK we will be able to report back to the manufacturers to ensure the wattage requirements match the needs of this market.

“We are very grateful to the local parish council for getting behind this sustainability project.”

The trial is being run at no cost to the council or taxpayer.

The comapny hopes Bucks County Council will eventually install the system throughout the county.

The column was erected and switched on under the watchful eye of Cllr Mike Lawson, Highways Committee Chairman for Gerrards Cross Parish Council.

He said: “We have got to leave it for a while as we are not sure how it will perform in the conditions.

“But it would be a great alternative to light quieter areas like the play area on the Common. It is an added reassurance at night and a very cheap option."

The parish council is currently replacing all its street lighting with new low-energy LED bulbs, with the project about 25 per cent complete.

However, some residents have complained the new bulbs are not as bright as the previous ones.