2 March 2024

Town prepares for big Christmas lights switch-on

by Rebecca Hannant

Withernsea’s annual Christmas lights switch-on will go ahead this weekend with a new lighting display.

The future of the town’s festive lights was secured thanks to a £50,000 donation from Withernsea Big Local, after the town council had previously said it would have to scale back the display due to ageing electrical systems.

In recent years the council has also decided to hold the main event in Valley Gardens, which has prompted debate among residents.

A spokeswoman for Withernsea Town Council said: “There was local resistance for us using Valley Gardens, which we expected as it’s people having to accept ‘change’.

“Last year it was a cold, wet night, as it would have been in Queen Street or elsewhere, but it was done for the children who saw some new lighting installed, the appearance of Olaf, the Snow Queen and Snow Wolf, plus Santa in his grotto and a brass band.

“We should all be eternally grateful to Withernsea Big Local for their generosity in funding £50,000 for our new supply and lighting scheme. They are leaving a great legacy for the town. They further supported the colossal cost of works required to allow the removal and installation works with a traffic management plan in place, a cost essential for works to proceed and public safety.”

The funding has gone towards a new festoon lighting display along Queen Street, while Valley Gardens will also host a new display alongside a 6m cone tree.

The event, which will be hosted by Seaside FM, will get under way at 4pm in Valley Gardens on Saturday, November 25, with the tree lights being switched on at 5pm. Theatre company Animated Objects will also host a lantern display between 4pm and 6pm.

The spokeswoman added: “This is a new era and new concept for Withernsea Christmas lights. We have a new energy-efficient lighting display and some new feature points that may be built on in the future with your support.

“A lot of people have worked tremendously hard throughout the year to make this year’s display possible, especially in the current climate when some towns are having to reduce their festivities. We wish to thank Withernsea Big Local for making this all possible. Without them we could be facing a dull Christmas.

“We would also like to thank PJD Electrical for their efficiency and continued support to the Withernsea lights. They have been with us for 20-plus years and their knowledge and expertise is of great value to us. LITE Ltd has provided us with the supply, part-installation and guidance throughout the year. Also Electric Avenue for its discreet installations.

“We would also like to thank Animated Objects, Seaside Radio, the Meridian Centre, Holderness Health and NHS Property for their permissions and support.”

The town council will also host its annual Remembrance Tree Service on Friday, December 1, at 7pm. Tea/coffee and mince pies will be available in the Meridian Centre afterwards. All donations will go towards the Withernsea Armed Forces and Veterans’ Breakfast Club.