Community display of festive spirit for city as streets burst into light
- Credit: Jamie Honeywood
Homes and businesses in a Norwich postal code have come together to light up the area in a display of Christmas spirit.
On Saturday, the NR2 winter light switch on took place, with houses, pubs and cafés around the area springing into life at 5pm, staying open late and serving festive food and drink.
There are roughly 50 places taking part, with a map created to guide those hoping to visit and explore the area.
It was organised by Kim Weston, who, earlier this year, put on the first NR2 yard sale trail, where people living in the area sold their unwanted goods.
It saw more than 300 homes take part, and Mrs Weston found, through a survey later undertaken in the area, that it boosted community spirit.
'I asked people what they got out of it,' she said, 'so did they make money, or declutter, for example. But about 70pc of people who responded said the best thing was getting to meet their neighbours.'
So with a community Christmas light switch-on already taking place in her Havelock Road, she decided to take the festivities further afield, and invited all of NR2 to join them on the launch night.
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And she said it had been a success, with lights twinkling in many parts of NR2.
'We were really fortunate to have the Norwich Community Choir with us,' she said, 'who then went onto the Mitre. We probably had about 50 to 60 people who came out to listen.'
The Mitre Pub, on nearby Earlham Road, which reopened in August 2017 after a major investment, was one of those taking part, serving warm food and drink for those taking a break from the cold.
Its manager Carl Brown said: 'We had the choir singing in the Mitre and it was a lovely evening. We had mince pies and mulled wine and celebrated with the local residents.'
He said the event was indicative of the area, which he said has a strong community spirit.
'There is a real community spirit here,' he said. 'We have lots of local NR2 people who come in and love the place, in fact that's where the majority of our custom comes from, people who live around the corner and pop in.'
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