Many of you will have seen the Christmas lights being switched on last Friday 5th December. The lights festival always attracts a large crowd and this year was no exception. The event was attended and covered by WessexFM and many local businesses opened for the evening. There were lots of stalls and even a Christmas Fayre in the Town Hall held by Beaminster School. There was music from the Phoenix Brass Band and Father Christmas himself could be found!
Tilly Pyper, from St Mary’s Academy School designed the winning Christmas Lights Festival poster. She headed the parade with Father Christmas, Mrs Christmas and the Town Crier from the school to the square. When the parade got to the town square, Tilly counted down from 10 whilst the crowd waited for the lights to be switched on.
There are lots of photographs of the event in the gallery shown at the end of this article.
You may be surprised to learn that the Beaminster Christmas Lights Festival occurs due to the efforts of a small a committee of just 6 people: Carole Annetts, Sam Pearce, Debbie Boyer, Julie Murley, Angela Lindsay and Rachel Brown. The committee meet regularly throughout the year to plan the years event.
Carole Annetts provided us with more details. The Town Council fund the basics for Christmas in the town (insurance, road closure, hire of barriers, installation of lights etc) but the committee have to raise funds to purchase new lights, hire Santa’s Sleigh and donate to the Brass Band. They are also supported by local businesses and would like to thank the following for their ongoing support each year: Wakelys for supplying the Christmas tree, Buglers for installing the tree, Hardwills for supplying a Cherry Picker to put the lights on tree, David Landscapes for removing the tree after Christmas and all of the businesses who donate to the lights each year through sponsorship, supply electricity on the night for the stalls and support us in many other ways.
The Christmas Lights Committee are looking to set up a 100 club to enable the general public to donate towards more Christmas lights for next year. They are planning to run 2 or 3 Bingo events during the year following two successful events this year. Details will be available in the new year.
Each year the committee are looking to improve the evening and any suggestions or feedback would be welcome as would offers of help on the night. You can contact Carole on 01308 867790 or 07971 698778.