INVERCLYDE'S MP teamed up with a Gourock resident to shine a light on an issue that they claim has been polluting communities. 

Ronnie Cowan was contacted by local man Thomas Gavin about 'excessively bright lights' installed at Fort Matilda railway station. 

Thomas claimed the orange-hued lamps had been beaming out across Gourock and far beyond - being visible as far away as Argyll - for two years. 

He approached Mr Cowan about the problem around nine months ago, stating that it wasn't the presence of the lights that was the issue, but rather the colour of them and the direction in which they were pointing. 

Greenock Telegraph:
Thomas also highlighted that the orange light had remained in place many years after Inverclyde Council installed LED street lighting across the district. 

Mr Cowan said the issue was rectified 'quickly and efficiently' by the rail operator after he got in touch.

The SNP politician added: "I have a really good working relationship with ScotRail so I contacted them to tell them about the issue. 

"Someone was sent out to change the lights, and then returned a few days later to change the direction of them. 

"It was a really easy process and they improved the facility quickly and efficiently. 

"They took the issue on board and solved the problem."

Thomas started to become concerned about the 'light pollution' being produced by the Fort Matilda facility around two years ago. 

He said: "I live on a hillside about one kilometre away and it was uncomfortable for me to look over in that direction at night. 

"It was like looking at a car with its full beam headlights on. 

"The orange light reflected all over the area, lighting up the sky and reflecting off the water."

Thomas learned more about light pollution through the Dark-Sky Association and did his research before deciding to campaign for the lights to be changed. 

He contacted ScotRail and the Rail Ombudsman with no success before seeking help from Gourock Community Council. 

Thomas said the resistance he was met with motivated him to contact his local MP. 

He added: "Learning more about light pollution has really opened my eyes. 

"It was a horrible orange glare and was a totally different kind of light to the LED lights installed by the council in 2017.

"I'm really thankful to Ronnie for taking the issue on and solving the problem."

Mr Cowan stressed the issue was never about the presence of the lights at the station but rather their colour and positioning. 

He has now appealed to ScotRail to look at the lighting in other stations across the Inverclyde network. 

Mr Cowan added: "This isn't about bright lights being at the station. We need them for safety. 

"The council went to great efforts to install LED street lighting in the area back in 2017. 

"ScotRail should keep on doing everything they can to ensure LED lights are in all the stations."