For reasons unknown – but all part of small towns and their local planning intrigues - a group of well-intentioned people decided that the town looking like an over-excited Christmas tree from 1974 was a bit kitsch, or common, or something and decided to go upmarket. Out went the giant santa and reindeer and in came a few white lights draped decorously and minimally over the trees on the main road.
Put simply, this did not go down well. Whispers and tutting. Meetings and tutting. What a small English town can never have enough of is tutting. My guess is some people will never speak to each other again.
I mention this because the lights were switched on again last Friday and we wandered down to see the state of play a few years on from what I like to think of as tinsel-gate. The switching on of the lights is a big affair for a small town, with hog roasts, and Christmas stalls, local radio and Steve Bull. It was rainy fun.
As for the lights. Well, committee compromise seems to have taken hold. The white lights remain as the dominant motif. But they have been joined by some old-fashioned multi-coloured bulbs criss-crossing the street. I'm afraid, for me, the overall effect feels somewhat mediocre, falling somewhere in the no man's land between tasteful and tacky.