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‘It’s unlikely things will have changed by Christmas’ - town’s light switch-on cancelled

PUBLISHED: 13:04 25 August 2020 | UPDATED: 18:23 25 August 2020

Aylsham Christmas lights.

Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Aylsham Christmas lights. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Archant Norfolk 2015

A town’s Christmas light switch-on has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Aylsham Christmas lights.

Picture: MARK BULLIMOREAylsham Christmas lights. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Aylsham Christmas light switch-on was set to take place on Friday November 27, but now it will not go ahead as organisers say they are unable to control numbers and believe social distancing will likely to still be in force during the festive period.

Sue Lake of Aylsham Town Council said: “We’ve come to this decision because the event is extremely popular and as it is in the market place so we just can’t control the numbers, whilst ensuring Covid safety. Because it is in a public place we can’t stop anyone from coming so it’s impossible to manage the numbers, and you have to make a decision at some point, because these things don’t get organised in a week.

“It’s unlikely things will have changed by Christmas. If they have and we can do some sort of smaller event then we will do but it is very unlikely judging by the guidelines that we have to work to at the moment.”

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Ms Lake said stall holders who usually line the streets during the event had taken the disappointing news well, despite the obvious impact on trade.

She added: “I think they were all resigned to it to be honest, I think it’s happened everywhere else so I think 2020 is almost cancelled for events as a whole.

“It’s not been a good year for events and traders at all across the country and the world I suppose. We haven’t been able to hold any of our usual events this year which is obviously disappointing but there’s nothing we can do about it really.

“This decision was made quite reluctantly, but we had to do it, there really isn’t any way around it.”

The Christmas light display will still be on show in the town centre and a large Christmas tree will be put up in the market place without a ceremony.


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