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A study suggests so-called "light pollution" is hindering a starry view of the night sky for some Hertfordshire residents.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England says in Oaklands, Woolmer Green, Bengeo and the Six Hills Way area of Stevenage they struggled to see more than ten stars.

Parts of Hertford town centre and Bayfordbury fared much better.

Those taking part in the study were asked to count the number of stars they could see with the naked eye within the Orion constellation, which is only visible in winter.

The results reveal the true impact of artificial light from streets and buildings and how it affects "one of the countryside's most magical sights - a dark, starry night sky", according to campaigners.

The CPRE is now calling for the government, local councils and the general public to make efforts to tackle light pollution.

Emma Marrington, dark skies campaigner at CPRE, said it was "deeply disappointing" that many people were unable to see a truly dark night sky.

She said: "Without intervention, our night sky will continue to be lost under a veil of artificial light, to the detriment of our own health, and the health of the natural world.

"Light doesn't respect boundaries, and careless use can see it spread for miles from towns, cities, businesses and motorways."

Ms Marrington suggested councils should use lighting only when and where needed, invest in street light dimming schemes and consider part-night lighting.

The general public can also do their bit by only turning on outdoor lights if and when needed.

:: You can see an interactive map of the star count results here.

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