THERE were huge cheers across the area as the Christmas lights were switched on in our towns.
The new illuminations in Stamford were turned on by Malcolm Sargent Primary School pupil Tom Crick, nine, on Friday evening.
Tom had arrived in Red Lion Square on Santa’s sleigh after dinner at the town hall with his family and the mayor of Stamford John Binder.
Tom’s mother Helga said: “He has been ever so excited. We have had a countdown over the last five days.”
This year the town’s traditional fir tree was replaced with a tree of lights, which is a three-storey cascade of white bulbs with a red star on top.
Some observers liked the new illuminations.
Nigel Harvey, 47, of Launde Gardens, Stamford, said: “It’s an improvement on what they had last year. It’s very modern and forward thinking.”
But some people were not so keen. Hannah Kinkade, 26, of Rutland Heights, was at the switch-on with her children Sophie, four, Lottie, two, and Sidney, who is just eight weeks old.
She said: “For the children a traditional tree would be better. You come down here for the Christmas atmosphere and a couple of lights mean nothing to them.”
The evening began with performances from Wildcats Theatre School singers Annabel Otterburn, 10, and Jasmine Shelding, 13, and New College Stamford student Jodie Halls, 17.
Children from Malcolm Sargent, St Augustine’s and St Gilbert’s primary school sang carols.
Murrays estate agents provided balloons, wine and mince pies from its office across the square.
Meanwhile, in Market Deeping the lights switch-on marked the end of a successful Christmas Market, which was held in the Market Place on Sunday.
The lights were switched on by mayor Bob Broughton and Deepings carnival queen Danielle Holland.
Coun Broughton said: “It was a magical Christmas event, enjoyed by the whole community.”
The lights in Bourne were also switched on by mayor Brenda Johnson and Santa on Friday.
There was a craft fair and school choirs also performed.