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Yuletide lights disappointing

PUBLISHED: 12:39 14 January 2002 | UPDATED: 11:10 03 March 2010

VILLAGERS were left disappointed at their community's Christmas lights display and there may be a rethink before the 2002 festive season arrives.

Trimley St Mary abandoned the traditional decorated fir tree this time after the previous year's specimen endured a tale of a gruesome pine.

VILLAGERS were left disappointed at their community's Christmas lights display and there may be a rethink before the 2002 festive season arrives.

Trimley St Mary abandoned the traditional decorated fir tree this time after the previous year's specimen endured a tale of a gruesome pine.

It was possibly the unluckiest Christmas tree in the country and before a mince pie was munched, or a carol sung, or season's greetings warmly exchanged, it was left looking a truly ragged specimen.

It was delivered to the wrong address, and then dragged 30 yards down the street to its proper place – and on the way was run over by a car.

Its woes increased when it knocked over a fire hydrant, and then it had its lighting-up date postponed.

This time parish councillors decided not to take a chance of a repeat of the calamity and to use a home-grown specimen as the festive centrepiece and create a colourful illuminated grotto using an existing tree.

A large crowd gathered on the verge beside High Road and the junction of New Road for the switch on of the lights in the tree, carol singing and Santa's visit, organised by the parish council and High Road Neighbourhood Watch.

But the lights did not find favour with villagers – and several people have said that they were not up to their usual standard and preferred a decorated spruce.

Councillor Mary Dixon, said: "One or two people told me that they were disappointed at the lights being in the tree.

"They said it was a great pity that a traditional tree was not put up with lights on it this time."

But it's not just disappointment from residents which will force a rethink for Christmas this year.

Parish clerk George Harlow, said the county council would be insisting that the council complied with new safety regulations for providing power to the lights.

"If we take the power from a street lamp, as we usually do, then we will have to comply with the regulations and be inspected and that will cost extra. The only alternative is to find a householder nearby who would be willing to let us run the power cable from his home and we would pay for the electricity," he said.

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