New exhibition in King’s Lynn looks at how we celebrated Christmas in years gone by

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictured is the collections owner Lindsay Able. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Remember those dodgy-looking fairy lights and Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer playing on your Dansette?

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

A new exhibition at King's Lynn Custom House looks back at how we celebrated Christmas generations ago, with some of the first mass-produced decorations including santa figurines and fairies to top off your tree.

Popularised in Victorian times when the Royal family appeared in a magazine of the day with their Christmas tree, the tradition soon spread.

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictured is the collections owner Lindsay Able. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Some of the first mass-produced trees are included in the exhibition - made from feathers wound around wire like a fisherman might tie a fly.

They belong to Lyndsay Abel, who has spent 15 years collecting festive memorabilia, but insists: 'I'm a collectaholic - not a Christmasaholic.

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictured is the collections owner Lindsay Able. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt


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'It's just a fascinating thing to collect, there are so many different aspects of it.'

From the decadence of the 1920s and the first mass-produced baubles, Christmas became more make do and mend in the post-war 1940s.

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictured is the collections owner Lindsay Able. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

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By the 1950s and '60s, plastic trappings began to appear - along with the first 78RPM Christmas singles to spin on your Dansette record player.

Mrs Abel also has what she believes to be one of the first Christmas craker jokes.

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

The exhibition at Lynn Custom House runs until December 31 (cloed Christas Day and Boxing Day). Open daily 10.30 - 3.30 (12pm - 3,.30pm Sundays).

Entry costs £1 for adults and 50p for children. Groups by arrangement on 01553 763044.

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Pictur

New exhibition 'Christmas Through the Decades' has opened at The Custom House in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

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