A PETROL station’s forecourt lights which have lit up part of a village ‘like Blackpool’ will need to be taken down.

Residents complained about the Motor Fuel Group (MFG) Esso Petrol Station in Bloxham just weeks after eight forecourt lights were installed in February 2018.

Cherwell District Council studies showed that the average luminescence emitted from the forecourt was brighter than some floodlights at FA-approved football matches.

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Amanda Baxter, who lives opposite the petrol station in South Newington Road, said her family had been living a ‘nightmare’ since the lights were installed.

Oxford Mail:

Mrs Baxter said: “This is a nightmare for us. Bright white light intrudes and invades into our bedrooms, our reception rooms and we battle on a daily basis to shut out the light.

“We’re unable to use our reception rooms without the curtains drawn when the lights are switched on.”

Mrs Baxter said that during the winter, the lights would be switched on as early as 3pm.

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Motor Fuel Group says it is the largest independent forecourt operator in the UK. It runs more than 900 stations, with them operating under the BP, Shell, Texaco, JET and Murco brands.

Cherwell's council officers said the station’s operators have already been served with a community protection notice, which orders them to turn the lights’ brightness down.

The petrol station was given permission to sell alcohol and stay open for 24 hours last year.

Oxford Mail:

But council officers said bosses had given ‘very limited information’ in applying for retrospective permission for the lights.

Councillor Ian Corkin said the company ‘should be issued with an ASBO’.

He added it was was ‘playing fast and loose’ with planning legislation and had shown ‘no corporate responsibility whatsoever’.

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Referring to Mrs Baxter and her family, Bloxham district councillor Chris Heath had said problems had started when the lights were installed and the petrol station was granted an alcohol licence.

She said: “They had absolutely no problem until February last year, when the whole place was lit up like Blackpool. The [station] was not given any permission whatsoever [to install the lights].”

Councillors at Cherwell District Council’s planning committee unanimously rejected MFG’s application.

MFG was contacted for a statement.