An appeal for lighting has been made by Canford Heath residents fed up with having to stumble around in the dark to find their cars.

More than a year ago the Co-op supermarket shut its doors at Adastral Square on the Poole estate – and the power was pulled on the lights in the large car park at the rear.

Now pitch black in the evenings, the car park is also used by people visiting the community centre, the youth club, library and doctor’s surgery and residents have had enough.

Canford Heath Townswomen’s Guild members, who hold their evening meetings at the community centre signed a 30-strong petition urging Borough of Poole to put pressure on the landowner to provide adequate lighting.

Treasurer Linda Penn said: “There are no lights at all until you get to the road. It’s just ridiculous when there are people using the community centre and the pub.”

Chairman Annie Garner said: “When we come out of the Guild at night, because our members are mature ladies, it’s dangerous for them,” she said.

Committee member Judy Jones said: “We have lots of thing to carry out and put in the boots of our cars and we can’t see what we are doing.”

Jo Gash said: “Lots of other people use the hall. There are dance groups and young girls coming out when it’s dark.”

Cllr Sandra Moore, who represents Canford Heath East, and presented the petition to Borough of Poole described the situation as “outrageous”.

She pointed out the council did not own or maintain the car park and under its lease the Co-op was responsible. “The Co-op signed a 15-year lease from May 2004 for a supermarket that is currently empty. They don’t have a duty of care that a council has.”

Colleague Cllr Jennie Hodges said: “Trying to get someone to take responsibility for this area is quite a job.”

Borough of Poole wrote to the Co-op last November and has not yet received a reply. A second letter has now been sent.

The Daily Echo contacted the Co-op for a response and had not received one by the time it went to press.