‘Festive cheer’ on display as hundreds of people converge on Beccles
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Hundreds of people descended on a popular town centre as Beccles was illuminated for Christmas.
A snow machine sent flakes glistening into the night sky as the lights were switched on last night (Friday).
And organisers have hailed the success of the evening, as the town was lit up with 'festive cheer.'
With hundreds of people gathering to watch Heart Radio breakfast presenter Dave Taylor, Beccles mayor Graham Catchpole and the cast of the town's pantomime, Aladdin, switch on the Christmas lights, the festive season was started in style.
There was a variety of stalls to tempt the crowds, who enjoyed the entertainment that included Father Christmas making an early appearance alongside reindeer, rides, panto characters, singers, dancers and a Samba dance band, the town was lit up with 'festive cheer.'
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Running alongside the switch-on event was the launch of the Beccles Christmas Tree Trail, which runs until Christmas Eve and sees 53 businesses displaying trees in their windows.
The Hungate Church Christmas Tree Festival, which continues until Sunday, was also unveiled as an amazing spectacle of colour, light and creativity was showcased with more than 50 trees decorated by a variety of groups, organisations, businesses and individuals.
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The crowds also enjoyed performances live on stage from Tom Elgie, the Suffolk School of Samba, Beccles Community Choir, all female group Bella tonic and Beccles Rock Choir.
With the winner of the Beccles Best Dressed Christmas Window announced live on stage during the evening, Beccles mayor Graham Catchpole presented the prize to health food shop Hungate Health Store.
Steve Alderson, chairman of Beccles Business and Tourism Association, said: 'Beccles was lit up once more with festive cheer. Everything went to plan on the evening, the rain held off and from everyone I spoke to – on the stalls, in shops, in the crowds and from the association – was really pleased with how it went.
'A lot of shops, food and charity stall said they did quite well
'We are lucky in Beccles that the council provide the funds to have the lights installed and that the businesses and people of the town come together to help organise this event.'
He added: 'Without this support this amazing switch-on event would not happen.'
Leaflets for the Beccles Christmas Tree Trail are available from every business participating. They can be placed in collection boxes at Beccles Books, Roys, Beccles Library and Saxon Therapy Centre and the winner will get a family ticket to the town's pantomime Aladdin at Beccles Public Hall, and other top prizes.
? Visit www.beccleschristmaslights.co.uk for further details.