A BIRTHDAY party has been held... for a lamppost which has not been working for a year.

The street light in Pebmarsh Close, Colchester, was damaged 12 months ago after a bin lorry hit it.

But despite repeated requests for it to be fixed, nothing has happened.

Now in a bid to grab the attention of Essex Highways bosses, Colchester borough and Essex county councillor Dave Harris (Lab) has held a birthday party - complete with cake and card - at the lamppost.

Mr Harris said: “It’s been a full year and nothing has happened.

“It really is unacceptable.

“It is on a corner with Wethersfield Road where many people walk at night, so it needs to be lit to make people feel safe, especially now we are coming into winter and the evenings will be darker.

“I thought I’d have a party to show it’s still not been done.

“I selected a card with an owl on it because you have to be an owl to see around the place at night.”

Mr Harris first raised the issue on October 11 last year.

In email exchanges seen by The Gazette, he was initially told the lamppost would be repaired within “four to five weeks”.

But nothing was done and, in August, Mr Harris raised the issue again, only to be told the job had been passed to a contractor to install a new lamp column.

At that time, the contractor was waiting for new materials to complete the work.

No timescale for repairs could be given.

When Mr Harris then asked why the contractor did not have any lamppost columns, which are frequently needed for repairs, he was told although the equipment had been available since October last year, “other works have taken priority”.

Essex Highways has now confirmed the street light will be repaired within a week.

The job will then have to be passed to UK Power Networks to reconnect the electrical supply.

Mr Harris added: “This is a service each and everyone of us pay our council tax for.

“The least we could expect is for our streets to be lit up - at least as long as they let us these days.

“It’s simple - it should not take a year for a lamppost to be repaired.”