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Photos of Wincanton Christmas Extravaganza 2012 UPDATED

Wednesday 26 December 2012, 15:26
By Dave Smith

Here are some photos I took of the Wincanton Christmas Extravaganza, Friday 7th December 2012, with my mobile phone. If you managed to get some of your own, send them in () and I'll add them to the top! Click the thumbnails to enlarge them.

We'd also love to hear what you thought of this year's festivities, perhaps compared to previous years. What was good, what was... less good. What could be added next year! It takes but a moment to create an account and post comments instantly at the bottom of the page where everyone can read them.

Watch this space! If we're lucky we might get a statement or two from the Extravaganza organisers who work tirelessly to bring Wincanton to life a little more each year.

[UPDATE:] We've had something from the event organisers! Read it at the bottom.



Some words from Extravaganza organiser, Suzy Turner-Wilcockson:

Events like the Wincanton Christmas Extravaganza are brilliant for getting the community together in the spirit of Christmas.

This year we had an amazing array of stalls filling the Sweetman Hall at the Bear and the skittle alley at the Dolphin. Both public houses deserve huge thanks for letting the stall holders into their premises for the night, making it a widespread event. The Anonymous Travelling Market provided stalls on the High Street.

There was a wonderful display of dance provided by the children of Just Dance, who spent weeks of their lessons down at the Honbo practicing so they could dazzle us with their swift moves. Unfortunately due to the drizzle making the surface on Carrington Way slippery, they moved their performance to the bottom of the High Street.

The Mayor and members of the Town Council, along with Chris Beech, the Head at King Arthurs, Stewart Mathews and various others all attended the Mayor’s reception in the Town Hall, with tasty snacks provided by the Cat Café and drinks from Divine Wines.

While they enjoyed the Mayor’s hospitality the Victorian street organ was making sweet music down by the Christmas tree and children and teachers from KA, Wincanton Primary and Our Lady of Mount Carmel Primary Schools were getting set up.

The children really made the night magical with their carol singing. They sang some carols as a group before carol sheets were handed out to the public and all were invited to join in the singing. The vicar from St Peters & Pauls reminded us of the true spirit of Christmas and welcomed us all to the event before handing over to Stewart Matthews to turn on the Christmas tree lights. While everyone counted down I was holding my breath that they would turn on when required.

Down in the Baptist church hall queues of children waited to have their face painted and to see Father Christmas. There weren’t as many visitors to see Father Christmas this year as there were last year and I wonder if this is down to the recession and general financial down turn; we are all suffering.

The left over gifts did not go to waste, and were passed on to three well deserving causes: a women’s refuge for the children spending Christmas there; the Salvation Army, who were very grateful to be given gifts to pass on to families in need; and thirdly a food bank, to be added to the boxes of the neediest families.

The feedback from the High Street shops was that they were all reasonably busy on the evening which is great as the event is all about community. Shops on the High Street are part of our community, and we need to support them otherwise we will lose our unique shops.

All in all it was an amazing night, though by the time it had all packed up and gone at 9.00pm I was totally shattered, having been on the High Street since 9.00am that morning organizing the final touches and making sure the event went smoothly.

Last year the last minute running about was shared between me and John Smith but this year, due to personal reasons, John was unable to be there, leaving me to shoulder all the responsibility on my own, which I have to say, was very stressful. A large majority of the organising for the event was taken on by me this year as help was shortcoming. John did a share but even so it was a struggle with just the two of us to get the event viable.

For nearly three weeks in the run up to the event I hardly saw my family. If next year’s event is to go ahead then we need volunteers who are willing to help organize the event as I am unwilling to take it on single handed for next year. My family need me.

If you would be willing to come on board and give a little of your time for the community then please contact me or John, or .


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