This year, it was Worcester residents, led by Oscar Saxelby-Lee, who turned on the city’s Christmas lights.
Olivia Saxelby-Lee, Oscar’s mum, says: “Christmas is the most special time of year for us as a family. It is the time we celebrate life, appreciate each other and treasure the love we share.
“To be able to spend this Christmas here in our home in Worcester is something we have longed for. Without the light, love and support from our community this wouldn’t be possible.
“From holding us close, to watching our pain, a team is what we’ve been! We watch our little Oscar growing in strength every day, it warms our hearts and brings us joy that we will never throw away. Even though the world has become an uncertain place we hope to spread some cheer, as Christmas is so magical in itself, that it reminds us of why we are here.
Our community spirit is so strong, we have been so blessed with you all, so let’s light up our city together and share this special ritual.”
Visit Worcester hosted the Light Up Worcester campaign to ensure that a COVID Christmas can still bring a seasonal smile to the faces of old and young alike, as the community pulls together.
Visit Worcester invited local residents to send in footage and photos of their family switching on home or garden Christmas lights.
“We want to see your Christmas tree lights being switched on at home or in your garden,” says Sam McCarthy of Worcester BID.
“Local independent shops can help with decorations. Visit MangoJuice Gallery on New Street, Cornucopia in Crowngate and New England on Broad Street who all have stylish, beautiful house decorations to suit every style and budget ready to click & collect and deliver to your door. Or head to House of Haby in The Market on The Shambles for wool to make your own festive pom pom garlands or to crochet stars, also via click and collect. Crumpet & Coffee in Angel Place also have decorations and Mr Simms Olde Sweet Shoppe on the High Street sells candy canes to decorate your tree, which you can collect or have delivered.
“Let’s support our independent shops to light up Worcester more than ever this year!”
At 6.00pm on 26 November, a short film of Worcester’s family Christmas lights switch-on was posted via the Visit Worcester Facebook page and @visitworcester Twitter feed.
The Mayor of Worcester, Cllr Jo Hodges adds: “Whilst it’s not appropriate to hold a mass switch-on event in the city centre this year, we encourage people to brighten up the lives of those around them by adding light and sparkle to their homes to share the festive spirit.”
Fine Food and Crafts Markets are planned to take place in the High Street on Saturday 5, Sunday 6, Saturday 19, and Sunday 20 December. A Worcester Arts Market is also scheduled for Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 December and a variety of street performances will bring a Christmas atmosphere to the city centre.