Tuesday, 22 May 2018

£10,000 spent on our Christmas celebrations

MORE than £10,000 was spent on last year’s Christmas celebrations in Henley.

MORE than £10,000 was spent on last year’s Christmas celebrations in Henley.

The sum includes £1,573 spent on the 40ft Norwegian Spruce that was put up in Market Place.

Other major costs included the installation of new cross-street lights and decorating the tree (£1,645), closing the town centre roads for the Christmas Festival (£1,200) and providing floodlights (£1,020).

In a report to the town council’s Christmas events and decorations sub- committee, itemised costs also included £5.94 on Elf hats for Father Christmas’s grotto at King’s Arms Barn.

Other costs included testing/maintenance of the lights (£1,214), 10 small Christmas trees from Lions/Windowflowers scheme (£565), Salvation Army Band donation (£100) and road closures (£1,200).

A third of the funding came from sponsorship from businesses, including Invesco Perpetual (£1,750), Towergate Insurance (£150), Southern Plant Hire (£50), The Head Partnership (£100) and Stonehouse Property Care (£100). The rest of the budget came from the town council (£7,390) and South Oxfordshire District Council (£1,000).

A surplus of £2,344.42 will be carried over to fund this year’s celebrations for which the council has so far budgeted £6,500.

Last year’s 21st Christmas Festival saw thousands of people pack into the town centre to see the switch-on of the main tree lights, carol singing and a children’s parade.

About 50 businesses, charities and organisations had stalls selling festive gifts, food and drink and most of the shops stayed open late with many handing out mulled wine and mince pies.

Town centre manager Peter McConnell said afterwards: “We were incredibly pleased with the way it went and credit must go to the town council staff who organised it.”

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