The Henley bridge lights were switched back on last night (Thursday) after being vandalised at the end of April in time for Henley Regatta and Festival.
Clive Hemsley who installed the lights has had difficulty finding someone to mend the lights but was pleased that local electrician Guy Thatcher fixed them this week.
Clive installed the temporary light installation in February without planning permission from South Oxfordshire District Council (SODC) or Oxfordshire County Council (OCC). SODC issued Clive with an alleged breach notice of listed building consent in April and said that they would make arrangements to remove the lights which they haven’t done.
Clive said “After four failed attempts, Guy fixed them so hopefully all the visitors and townsfolk will enjoy the spectacle for Regatta and Festival – after that who knows. I’d like to thank all the 2500 people who backed me by signing the petition and made it happen, even if its temporary.”
Janet Wheeler, Henley Town Clerk informed the Town & Community meeting on 12 June that as Oxfordshire County Council who are the owners of the bridge do not wish anything permanently fixed to the bridge so they are looking into the cost for laser lights to be beamed onto the bridge.
When Clive installed the lights he took photos of the damage to the underside of the bridge calling for OCC to mend it. Councillor Will Hamilton this week tweeted OCC asking them when this work would be done. They replied, “Currently we have no plans to repair this isolated section of damage. We will continue monitoring it and schedule works when significant repairs are required.” Will replied, “Can you please add it to the OCC Henley wishlist, the bridge is a Grade One listed structure and needs maximum care.”