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Christmas lights will be switched on in Clare as church of St Peter and St Paul hosts fair

PUBLISHED: 15:12 22 November 2016 | UPDATED: 15:12 22 November 2016

The Clare Christmas tree in 2015

The Clare Christmas tree in 2015

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A recently-formed community association is hoping to attract festive shoppers to a west Suffolk market town this weekend as it hosts its first Christmas fair in the local church.

Buildings in Clare town centre lit up for Christmas - photo by David Lamming Buildings in Clare town centre lit up for Christmas - photo by David Lamming

The church of St Peter and St Paul in Clare will be lit with candles for the event, which will coincide with the town’s Christmas lights switch-on this Friday evening. All proceeds will go towards maintaining the church.

Clare Community Association was formed earlier this year to stage events for the benefit of local people, including a successful ‘Party in the Park’ this summer, so this is the first time the group has organised the Christmas festivities. Last year’s lights switch-on was hosted by the Clare Christmas Lights Committee.

The fair, which will run in the church from 5pm to 9pm on Friday and from 10am to 4pm on the Saturday, will feature dozens of stalls selling everything from handmade contemporary glass artworks and silver jewellery to sweets, cakes, dolls, candles, cards, teddies and cashmere scarves.

Christine Glover, of the community association, said: “Towns are facing so much competition from online retailers and out-of-town 
supermarkets these days. It is so important that we organise events like this to encourage people to come into the town and show them what we have to offer.

Christmas comes to Clare this weekend - photo by David Lamming Christmas comes to Clare this weekend - photo by David Lamming

“Clare town centre is so pretty and it will look even more wonderful when it is lit up for Christmas.

“We are keeping our fingers crossed that people will come and support us, and purchase some of the unique items that will be on sale.

“All proceeds will go to help maintain our lovely church.”

Admission to the fair is free and refreshments, including mulled wine and roasted chestnuts, will be available. Traditional carols will be played outside the church and there will be a raffle.

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