Lighting the way for Santa’s big night out

Morpeth Christmas Lights'by Keith Robertson
Morpeth Christmas Lights'by Keith Robertson

SANTA will have no trouble finding his way to Morpeth as festive displays light up the town.

Thousands of twinkling bulbs are helping to spread seasonal cheer to residents, retailers, shoppers and visitors.

If Santa Claus is looking for some additional reindeer, or perhaps a new sleigh, he need look no further than Sanderson Arcade, while Morpeth Town Council and the Morpeth and District Chamber of Trade have again made sure that town centre streets are thoroughly decked out.

Last year, investment was made in new blue and white lights for Bridge Street, while this year organisers have splashed out on a new canopy for the Market Place, which uses more efficient LED lights.

Town Clerk Gillian Turner said: “We have had lots of comments about the lights from people.

“They say that the canopy in the Market Place is a lot brighter this year and they think the lights look very well co-ordinated, as though they have been really thought out.

“Everybody seems to appreciate the effort that goes into the town displays.”

Chamber of Trade Chairman John Beynon agrees and says the Morpeth lights can rival any in the North.

“The lights bring a lot of people into the town for the switch-on, but also throughout Christmas,” he said.

“When you compare them with those in the other towns in the area, we have got a far superior display. It just brightens the whole town up and everybody seems to appreciate it.

“We get nothing but positive comments about the lights from shoppers and the traders.

“They just get better and better every year and, outside the major cities, we have the best lights in the North.”

But it is not only the illuminations that are attracting attention as Morpeth’s department store has again pulled out all the stops for its Christmas window display.

The Rutherford’s window in Bridge Street is often compared with that of Fenwick’s store in Newcastle and has become something of a festive tradition.

This year there are sleighs, trees, snowmen and animals — there’s even a donkey posting his Christmas list to Santa.

The window is once again down to the imagination of the shop’s Merchandise and Advertising Manager Jill Harthill, who has been responsible for the display for the past eight years.