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Watton twinkles for Christmas thanks to volunteers

PUBLISHED: 09:14 02 December 2009 | UPDATED: 11:31 08 July 2010

A VOLUNTEER team say they are exhausted but pleased at having ensured Watton High Street sparkles brightly this Christmas.

A volunteer team say they are exhausted but pleased at having ensured Watton High Street sparkles brightly this Christmas.

For more than four months deputy mayor Roy Ivory and his son Joe have been working behind the scenes to plan Watton's festive lights display.

And since October others have also been at work fitting the lights together before finally hoisting them into position.

On Tuesday dedicated volunteers, including town councillors Alan Osborn and Michael Wassell, local resident Sandra Coulton and Dereham Town Councillor Tim Birt, who had come to lend a hand in his neighbouring market town, put the finishing touches to the display.

Last year, following delays in delivery of the new LED lighting system, there was only time to drape the lights along High Street but this year the lights can be seen in all their glory.

Mr Ivory said: “It has been a challenge installing a new system and it has been hard work but I am pleased.

“I am especially pleased with the chasing lights down High Street.

“This year was a total revamp. Now we can have displays every year.”

Because it is the first year the new £4,000 LED lights have been installed properly many hours have had to be spent installing the cabling and brackets from which to hang them.

Along with days where the team got soaked to the skin and worked late into the night they also had to contend with decaying brickwork and a host of other unforeseen factors.

At times all that kept the team going were sausage sandwiches and a supply of hot tea.

Mr Osborn said: “I reckon this has taken more than 300 man hours.

“We had a couple of days where we got absolutely soaked.”

Mr Osborn also expressed his disappointment that though the Chamber of Trade had been approached for volunteers to help put up the lights nobody had come forward.

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