AddThis SmartLayers

Scrooge not welcome as paper bids to light up Xmas

The Epsom Guardian is fighting to dispel the ‘Bah, Humbug’ attitude which has left the town in darkness for the past five festive seasons.

Epsom’s Christmas shoppers have not been able to enjoy lights and decorations as the local council and businesses have locked horns over who should pay for them.

Now the Guardian is calling on all interested parties to back their campaign to bring back some festive cheer to the Surrey town.

A campaign group has raised £6,000, which the council has matched, and local residents and business are being encouraged to contribute towards an initial target of £20,000.

Assistant editor Matthew Knowles said: “The campaign was launched in our latest edition and we’re going to be following the progress over the next few weeks.

“I’m not sure £20,000 is going to get us much but if that doesn’t happen then there’s something wrong in Epsom.

“We’ve had a good reaction so far and had a few people phoning up saying ‘well done’.

“It’s such a strange situation not to have Christmas lights.

“When I took over and someone said ‘we don’t have Christmas lights’ I was shocked.

“There’s about 35,000 people living in Epsom and it’s one of the most desirable places to live in the country.

“There is a strong economic argument for investing in Christmas lights as many retailers depend on Christmas for a significant percentage of their annual profits.”

The previous Christmas lights five years ago were actually a one-off ending another period of darkness and, according to Matthew, were “dreadful” which he says is the reason why they were stopped again.

If enough money is raised, eco-bulbs will be used in the lights put up on display.