FOOTBALL fans walking home after World Cup matches will do so in darkness.

This year’s competition is being held in Brazil meaning matches take place late in the evening UK time.

But while pubs have been given special dispensation by the government to stay open and show games fans making their way home afterwards face doing so in darkness as street lights across the county will go off at midnight.

It is part of a cash-saving scheme from the county council, where lights outside of town centres and busy road junctions are turned off from midnight until 5am.

A council spokesman said: "Essex County Council has no plans to alter the part-night lighting timings during the World Cup tournament.

"Essex County Council suspends street lights from the scheme in exceptional circumstances only."