Saturday, 25 November 2017

Turning on The Christmas Lights

It was a lovely festive atmosphere around the centre of town last night.
I walked up from the Clock Tower with a lady who's just moved to Hay - she comes from Darjeeling, so this was her first experience of a Hay Winter Festival, and her daughter was singing in the choir.
In the marquee, there were the usual local groups and businesses, selling things and running tombola stalls and so on. I bought some mini calendars from Botany and Other Stories, and then I headed up Castle Street to Gibbons the Butchers, where they were handing out mulled wine (delicious and just the thing to keep the cold out), and had their mobile food van set up on the road.
Then I found myself a corner behind the Cheese Market where I could hear the choir (and look up at Matt Lucas's ankles!) without getting stuck in the middle of the crowd. Rev Charlesworth came to join me to listen to the choir - they'll be singing in his church in a week or so, and this was the first time he'd had a chance to listen to them.
And then, the big moment - Matt Lucas bounded up onto the stage and said a few words (including "You do realise I'm Jewish, don't you?", but he also said how honoured he was to have been asked). George the Town Crier led the countdown, Matt pressed the plunger, and the lights came on all over town.
Then the Hay School choir came up to sing carols, and Matt Lucas was whisked away to the Festival marquee - a car was waiting outside Beer Revolution for him.

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