North Creake girls do the honours at village lights switch-on

Olivia Sands (left) and Ava Hooke switch on North Creake's Christmas lights MLNF16PB11534 ANL-161130-141056001

Olivia Sands (left) and Ava Hooke switch on North Creake's Christmas lights MLNF16PB11534 ANL-161130-141056001

Free mince pies were only one of the treats on offer when North Creake switched on its Christmas lights for the fifth year running on Saturday.

There was a wide range of stalls including a hog roast and an outside bar with mulled cider and real ale and – perhaps more strangely – candy floss.

A festooned natural tree on North Creake green provided a canopy of twinkling lights MLNF16PB11533 ANL-161130-140904001

A festooned natural tree on North Creake green provided a canopy of twinkling lights MLNF16PB11533 ANL-161130-140904001

Folk music was provided by the Daisy Cats.

School-age residents were not forgotten.

Father Christmas made an especially early visit to the village with presents for the younger generation.

Very much the central part of the celebration was the Jolly Farmers, the village pub.

The outside bar was brought in this year to complement the pub’s own bars which were packed to suffocation last year.

All the outdoor attractions were in a courtyard under canvas festooned with rows of twinkling fairy lights.

The main marquee had been loaned to the village by South Creake Guides and further cover came from a tent bought by the organisers.

The Christmas tree and the natural trees on the village green were all smothered with lights, switched on by Olivia Sands, 10, and Ava Hooke, five, who won a Christmas card design competition.

Their winning cards were printed and are now on sale to help fund next year’s event.

“We’ve bought lots more lights this year. Last year’s fund-raising paid for all this.

It’s a totally self-funded event,” said parish council chairman, Adam Bunkle, listing the main expenditure as £350 for the additional lights and £200 for the Christmas tree.

Before the Christmas tree twinkled into life Fr Clive Wylie blessed it.

Last year he introduced the tradition of a Posada, ceramic nativity figures of Mary, Joseph and a donkey.

Posada is a Spanish word meaning ‘Inn’. Posada celebrations originated in Mexico where two young people were chosen to dress up as Mary and Joseph.

They travelled from house to house in their village, telling the residents about the imminent arrive of Jesus and asking if they would give him room.

The modern equivalent encourages people to give the nativity figures a home for the night. In North Creake the figures will pass daily from house to house and arrive at St Mary’s parish church shortly before the 25th December for a service of Lessons and Carols for Christmas.

Mr Bunkle thanked the Jolly Farmers for their whole-hearted support of the event.