Hundreds turn out for Gosport Christmas light switch-on

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TO mark the start of the festive season, families filled the high street to listen to tunes and see the annual light switch-on. 

Hundreds enjoyed performances of dance groups and singers in Gosport High Street throughout the afternoon and evening before the Christmas tree and festive street lights were illuminated.

The Bolger family from Gosport - dad Rick, mum Catharine and James and Thomas. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (301119-8)

The Bolger family from Gosport - dad Rick, mum Catharine and James and Thomas. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (301119-8)

For Stephanie Snowden and her family it was their first time to the annual festive celebrations.

READ MORE: Families flock to see Coca-Cola truck in Whiteley Shopping Centre

The 28-year-old mother-of-two said: ‘We came along because my daughter Olivia performed with Starz Ballet and it has been a really nice event.

‘We wanted to stay to see the lights for the children and also go and visit Father Christmas. It is the first time we have been and it has made us feel festive.’

The Reeves family from Gosport. Mum Tania, dad Kevin and Jasmine and Tia. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (301119-6)

The Reeves family from Gosport. Mum Tania, dad Kevin and Jasmine and Tia. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (301119-6)

Olivia’s grandmother Julie Hobbs, 51, added: ‘It is a nice way to start off Christmas with December starting tomorrow. It was great to see Olivia performing and this is the first time I have been down to it in years and it is all really lovely.’

Hot beverages and food were on offer and there were rides for the children.

READ MORE: Three camels help Leigh Park church start Christmas celebrations

It comes after residents slammed Gosport Borough Council over a ‘pitiful’ Christmas tree which was put up in the town centre last week with the top section missing.

Santa Claus at the Gosport Christmas lights switch on. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (301119-2)

Santa Claus at the Gosport Christmas lights switch on. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (301119-2)

The tree was replaced with the council citing ‘damage in transit’ as the reason for the incomplete spruce.

The council also said it has spent £38,400 on Christmas decorations, more than the £31,000 spent last year.

Crowds having a good time at the Gosport Christmas lights switch-on. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (301119-1)

Crowds having a good time at the Gosport Christmas lights switch-on. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (301119-1)

The Gosport Christmas lights switch-on. From left Lucy Kane, councillor Kathy Jones, Abigail Webber and Ben Ofoedu. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (301119-4)

The Gosport Christmas lights switch-on. From left Lucy Kane, councillor Kathy Jones, Abigail Webber and Ben Ofoedu. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (301119-4)