Lyndhurst Christmas lights will return this year with help from Stag Hotel donation
LYNDHURST’s popular overhead Christmas lights will make a comeback to the high street this year, thanks to an “exceedingly generous” donation.
An appeal was recently launched to bring back the festoon lights which were axed in 2019 over safety concerns, and so far £4,222 has been collected of a £15,000 target.
But now the volunteer-run organising committee is confident that enough has been raised, with the help of an unspecified sum from the Stag Hotel, to guarantee a return for the next three years.
It said in a statement: “The chair would like to send our thanks for all donations received, from the public crowdfunding and businesses alike, in particular a gracious donation from the new owners of the Stag Hotel.
“In addition, they are also hosting a quiz night on 23rd September with all proceeds going to the lights.
“It is as a result of this level of support the lights across the high street are secured for the next three years.”
It added: “The Christmas lights work doesn’t stop there, which is why we are continuing to raise funds in the run up to Christmas.”
It has not been revealed how much the Stag Hotel's donation was.
Although different types of lights were added, there was disappointment when the overhead string decorations were axed, with traders concerned the village had lost some of its traditional atmosphere that pulled in visitors.
Originally there had been a fundraising deadline set for 1st September which came and went, before it was extended to the end of the month.
The new string lights will not be as extensive as in previous years, said the committee, due to restrictions on height over an A-road and the stability of some fixings. But other features will be added.
A Facebook update by the committee said: “After the overwhelming amount of support and generosity we have received on a whole towards the lights and decorations so far, we have decided to go ahead and take the leap of faith for the three years and commit.
“However, that doesn’t mean we are jingling our Christmas bells in celebration just yet, as there is still a fair bit of fundraising to do in order to not have to cut corners in other areas of the lights and decorations in the years to come.”
Committee member Sophia Watts added: “This solution does cost money. So with that in mind, in order for Lyndhurst to have a fantastic twinkling Christmas, to bring in the much-needed footfall over the quieter winter months for our businesses, we do need continuing donations so that our village can be the talk of the festive period.”
“Thank you so very much to all those who have already donated and supported the village lights and decorations.”
To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/Lyndhurst-decorations