Taunton’s ‘largest Christmas tree’ has arrived in the town centre ahead of a virtual Christmas lights switch-on this weekend.
The Christmas tree stands at approximately 35 foot high outside the Market House and is said to be the largest Christmas tree the town has seen to date.
Decorative lights have been installed on North Street, High Street and East Street.
A festive light display will be projected onto the Market House, providing an illuminated backdrop to the main tree.
Langford Lakes Christmas Tree Farm has very generously been donating the town’s annual Christmas tree for the last 12 years and will also be donating trees to Wellington and Wiveliscombe.
The tree arrived courtesy of Wheelers of Bridgwater and was installed by both the donor and Somerset West and Taunton Council’s localities team.
It has been decorated with wraparound lights and red, green and gold baubles, donated by Monkton Elm Garden Centre. A safety fencing enclosure has been provided by Westwood Fencing.
Two smaller Christmas trees have been similarly decorated and erected in North Street with a £500 festive offer donated by Taunton Farmers Market.
As previously announced there will be no formal Christmas light switch-on this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Christmas lights will instead be switched-on remotely by the Mayor of Taunton, Councillor Fran Smith, via video link from her home at 18:00 on Sunday 22 November.
The council is encouraging residents to stay COVID-safe by staying at home and watching the switch-on in real-time on its Facebook page.
The switch-on will be followed by a public address from the Mayor and a further switch-on of Christmas lights by the high street shops.
A craft market has been planned from 2 December, pending government guidance.
Cllr Marcus Kravis, executive member for economic development at Somerset West and Taunton Council, said:
“Regrettably, the annual Winterfest and ice rink is not possible this year due to the current restrictions, however, we’re pleased to be able to mark the start of the festive season by holding a virtual switch-on event instead.
We hope that our residents and businesses will join us in watching our live switch-on by following our Facebook page.
I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our donors for the support they’ve provided in helping us to arrange this event.”