The Parish Council are pleased to announce that it has agreed to host the Christmas Lights Street Event on Saturday 25th November this year.
We thought you would like to know something about how an event of this size is managed. We regularly attract some 2500 visitors on the day so before we can start on the fun bits we have to make sure we have all the formalities in place to obtain the licenses and permissions which every public event has to comply with now. Once this is underway we can concentrate on the installation of the lights in Spa Road, Southend Road and Broad Parade. These are funded by the council and switched on at the Street Event, staying up until New Year. Health and Safety is a high priority and is hitting all public events hard now, so we have called upon professional advice and guidance. Crowd control for the event is important to ensure everyone is safe should an emergency occur. We rely on volunteer councillors for crowd control who, this year, will be supported by a security company to control traffic. Rayleigh Mill and Rochford Rotary have also kindly agreed to help us out.
We know from your feedback that you enjoy a family event with market stalls which give charities and our local independent businesses an opportunity to offer ideas for Christmas gifts. The hog roast and mulled wine are also popular especially if the afternoon is on the chilly side. The Chamber of Trade supports us with sponsorship and the shops stay open in Spa Road which adds to the atmosphere.
A stage unit is brought in to give our youngsters a chance to show off their talents. Dancers and choirs perform during the afternoon and we work with the schools to make sure they are safe as everyone has to be on the ball when excited youngsters are involved. A Children’s Christmas Colouring Competition is held at the Parish Hall and other activities are arranged to keep the young and young at heart entertained. Christmas is not Christmas without Santa and his sleigh which is brought to the event by Rochford Rotary. The gifts are provided by the Parish Council and over 200 children visit the grotto.
The event is widely publicised with flyers and other advertising material produced in-house to keep costs to a minimum. We hope you will come along and support the event again. If you would like to take part in any way either by helping with the event arrangements, performing on stage or having a stall please let our Clerk Kate Smiles know on 01702 207707.
Children's Christmas Colouring Competition Saturday 26th November 2016
The youngsters were asked to colour a Gingerbread House this year and we received 114 entries which were ably judged by Mr Graham Tarte. The winners were invited to the Parish Hall in the afternoon to receive their prizes and afterwards turned on the Christmas Tree Lights in Southend Road. All the entries were displayed at Hockley Library over the Christmas period. Hockley Chamber of Trade & Commerce supported the competition by donating £1 to Little Havens for each entry received.