Britain’s most festive village puts on dazzling display as 100 neighbours club together to buy 10,000 lights – The Sun
NEIGHBOURS clubbed together to buy 10,000 Christmas lights to turn their entire village into a dazzling winter wonderland.
Residents in Haughton, Staffs., have been decorating their properties with festive lights after the tradition was started by village stalwart Bert Moore in 1984.
Bert began adorning his home with Yuletide displays for his grandchildren but after he died last year, the whole village decided to get involved.
This year, over one hundred properties have spent thousands of pounds decking out their homes with glorious Christmas displays with around 10,000 lights in total.
Visitors have been flocking to the rural village to see the festive illuminations donating over £5,000 so far to several charities as well as the the local church and school.
Every year we try and do something a bit different
Dad-of-two Paul Yeomans, 58, a carpenter, began decorating his house around 17 years ago when he was encouraged by Mr Moore, his next door neighbour.
The grandfather-of-one said: "We do it off our own backs. We look forward to putting the lights up. It's a nice thing to do and more and more people are now involved.
"Every year we try and do something a bit different. This year, I have got a film screen in the window, bought a projector and downloaded Christmas clips from the internet.
"The clips include Santa on his sleigh, looking through the window. It's what the Americans are into.
"We have lights and stand-up figures. Santa, snowmen, Christmas bears, anything to do with Christmas really.
"It all started when Bert gave me some lights and got me started. He helped me out to get started. Now we sort of do it in his honour.
"I would say there are about 100 lights in my garden. Last year we raised about £11,000 and we've already raised £5,000 this time round."
Mum-of-four Jennifer Gordon, 39, a teacher, added: "It started with a handful of houses but this year almost the entire village are doing it.
"Bert loved doing up his house for Christmas so everyone thought it would be a nice thing to do in his memory while raising money for good causes.
"Each house has at least 100 lights so you're looking at around 10,000 lights. It is quite dazzling but I think it looks really impressive and gets you in the festive spirit."
Mike Allen, Chairman of Haughton Parish Council, said: "It basically started quite a few years ago.
"It was the late Burt Moore who started the tradition for his grandchildren – it snowballed and other people joined in with decorations on their houses.
"It caught on so most people alongside the main road and now down the side roads decorate their houses and it really has gathered momentum.
"Sadly we lost Burt last year but the tradition has carried on which he started.
"A lot of people come to see the lights and there is a collection box if anyone wishes to give a donation.
"It's well in excess of £5,000 so far and we've only been collecting since December 10."
The lights will be on display until January 1 and any money raised will be split between the Midlands Air Ambulance, Katherine House Hospice and the MS Society.
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