Farnham families showed that they know how to have fun at Saturday’s Christmas lights’ switch on party, which featured new attractions for 2019.

Undeterred by the cold weather, people spent the afternoon being entertained by a non-stop programme of entertainment – most of which was free. Local schools and theatre groups sang and performed on the big stage while an ice sculptor captivated his audience when he used a chainsaw and chisel to transform blocks of ice into a reindeer and Father Christmas. 

In the children’s zone, there were fairground rides, animals, face-painting and pop up craft activities courtesy of the Farnham Maltings. There was also a free gift for every child who visited Father Christmas in his grotto. 

This year, Farnham people got to choose who they wanted to switch on the Christmas lights. Farnham Town Clerk Iain Lynch explains: “The Christmas lights switch-on is a big community event which lots of people attend. This year, we thought it would be good to work in partnership with the Farnham Herald and invite readers to nominate a community hero to join the Mayor of Farnham, Councillor Pat Evans in throwing the switch to illuminate Farnham with festive lights. 

“We were delighted that Gail Whattingham, Farnham’s very own queen of Christmas lights was chosen for the job. Every year, Gail festoons her house in Greenfield Road with lights to raise money for Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice – we think this made her a very good choice.”

The Mayor and Gail Whattingham were also joined by cast members from Aladdin who are starring in pantomime at The Harlington Centre in Fleet, Father Christmas and his team of elves and the Taiko Drummers. 

In summing up the afternoon Iain Lynch adds: “Without doubt, I think this year’s Christmas lights switch-on was bigger and better than ever and this is mainly down to the support we received from our sponsors Durham House Chiropractic Clinic, Bourne Wood Manor care home and Personnel Selection. I am truly grateful to our volunteers and business community for the support they give in helping us put on some great events for Farnham people to enjoy.”

Details about other events happening in Farnham in the weeks leading up to Christmas can be found at www.farnham.gov.uk/christmas. 

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