Caister set to stage its first ever Christmas switch-on on Friday

Trees have sprung up across Caister ready for Christmas. The village is staging its first ever switc

Trees have sprung up across Caister ready for Christmas. The village is staging its first ever switch-on on Friday night. - Credit: Archant

Not to be outdone by neighbouring villages that trim up for Christmas, Caister is set to sparkle too.

Some seven trees have sprung up around the village and organisers are also staging a switch-on for the first time on Friday.

They hope local folk will gather for the festive occasion at the council hall in the high street for carols and mince pies made by the local WI.

Organiser Kevin Wood said he was astounded that a village of 8000 people did so little to publicly celebrate the festive season and hoped the event would help to bring the community together.

On the night Tan Lane will be closed although Mr Wood has no idea how many people will turn up.

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As well as the trees strings of battery lights will garland the streets adding a seasonal glow and warming the spirits of anyone passing through.

Local choirs will be performing from 7pm with the switch-on at 7.15pm. It will be followed by more music, entertainment from a theatre school, and home-made cakes and snacks.

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Mr Wood, 64, a parish councillor of Seafield Road, set the Christmas wheels in motion around 18 months ago with the support of his wife Diane, who sadly died earlier in the year, making the effort particularly poignant.

Their children and grandchildren also live in the village.

He said: 'I only joined the parish council last year and I was driving through all the other villages and seeing their trees and I thought we really needed to do something.'

Mr Wood has also visited all the shops in the high street encouraging them to join in and co-ordinate their displays with Friday's event, boosting the illuminations.

'If this is a success we will do it every year,' he added. 'It is just something that brings the community together and I am hoping a lot of people will turn out to listen to the groups singing.'

The decorations are being funded by a mix of sponsorship and parish funds. Among those helping Caister to twinkle are Tesco, Booker Cash and Carry, Haven, and The Old Hall.

Trees will be at the gateway entrances as well as in the churchyard and at the end of School Lane which youngsters are being asked to decorate.

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