Automated timer-lights with attractive looking toggle switches: when the timer starts mis-behaving, and the switches don't respond in a positive and appropriate way, then it's time to show the switches just who's boss. And if they break, they needed replacing anyway.
(okay, I don't know how this really happened, but they have been having trouble with the lights for a few weeks. It might have actually been the electricians in a middle stage of their job. So: nothing culpable here, but I did wonder how the switch came to be like this.)