205. Water Street, Lavenham, Sudbury, Suffolk Attached to a wall bracket at the corner of Barn Street in this quaint "Chocolate Box" village is an ELECO "Ware Mk 3" HW-852 top-entry lantern, possibly still running an 80 Watt mercury vapour (MBF) lamp. Whilst Lavenham remained an MBF stronghold well into the mid-2010s, this installation appeared to be the sole remaining example in 2020, and even it looked to be on borrowed time. The installation is likely to have outlived the rest thanks to the road being narrow, and thus, any attempt to replace it would cause the road to be blocked to through traffic by the vehicle carrying out the work. All other examples had been changed to side-entry WRTL / Philips Stela Long LED lanterns by the time that these photographs were taken.
The timber-framed, medieval buildings are a feature of the village, with many painted rather strong pastel colours.
The lantern is not angled quite correctly for its position at the junction - the bowl clips should be in line with the carriageway.
The lamp is surrounded by an HW-838 prismatic refractor dome, followed by a transparent Perspex bowl.
From the other direction, some ominous spray paint markings exist in the footway surrounding the point at which the underground electricity supply emerges. The proposal appears to be for a new column to be installed to the right of the cable run.
The bracket extends for quite a considerable length, with a diagonal strut adding extra strength.
A Venture-made lamp is fitted in the lantern.
After taking these pictures, I contacted Suffolk County Council's street lighting team, and my hunch was right: the lantern was earmarked to be replaced. This occurred on the 22nd March 2021, while a road closure was in place on Water Street. A column supporting a Stela Long (this type of lantern itself being something of a museum piece by 2021) served as the replacement.
The wall-mounting sections of the bracket were left attached, as they were in poor condition (notice that the bolts are missing from the right-hand side of the top plate), and there was concern that attempting to remove them would damage the surrounding brickwork.
Thankfully, my request for the lantern to be saved was honoured, and I collected it (and the rest of the bracket!) on the 30th April 2021. I am very grateful to both the Suffolk County Council representatives who arranged for the lantern to be saved, and to a local Parish Councillor, who looked after the lantern until I was able to collect it. Click here to see pictures of my new acquisition.
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