Tim Davey Was scrapping our old lightbulbs really such a bright idea?
Hallowe'en is just around the corner. Bonfire Night will be hot on its heels. Both occasions act as powerful markers that Christmas and a New Year really are just around the corner.
Already Mrs Davey is squirrelling stuff away for December 25 in any spare nook and cranny she can find about the house.
And me? Well, I just feel I'm being increasingly kept in the dark. Not by any excessive domestic spending but by light deprivation. I am not a winter-time person.
Of course you can always switch the lights on. And that's my point. These days that has become a real issue. Thanks, I guess, to some bright spark's Euro-directive, illuminating one's home has become increasingly dreary.
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As a consequence light bulbs often barely pass a trades description test, inasmuch as they are most definitely not providers of light, or precious little of it.
A while back I had to replace the candle-shaped bulbs which illuminate our living room.
The new eco-generation of bulbs I was offered certainly fitted the sockets. What they don't do is shed any light on anything.
You throw the switches. Then wait. And wait a bit more by which time you begin to see a dull glow emerge from them. They don't do much better than that and, as a consequence, I find myself resorting to switching on a couple of table lamps so I can avoid stumbling in the gloom.
It's the same on the stairwell. Here, in the middle of what is a difficult drop for anyone changing a light bulb, I forked out an extortionate sum for one which claims it does not need replacing for ten years. Again, when you switch on, you can see why. It hardly breaks sweat and reaches its fullest glow long after you need your way illuminated up the stairs.
The only one of this new generation of light bulb which seems to react in a relatively quick way are downright ugly. I have some of them fitted in some rooms but they give the impression you have a glass ice cream or a pearl-coloured Curly Wurly peeking out of the light shade. If those good old-fashioned bulbs I now crave were devastating our environment, a terrible scourge on our planet, posing a threat to its very existence, then I fully understand why they should be consigned to the waste-tip of history.
But for goodness sake, surely, before we abandoned them all overnight, someone should have devised an Earth-friendly replacement that actually did what it claimed on the box. Shedding some light on our existence, that is. Or are we going to be forever doomed to living a life of gloom when darkness descends?