So here we are again!
Every year we come to one of our favourite Christmas events, at one of our much loved places! Lymm village was made for Christmas and especially on that most magical of evenings – Christmas Eve! Where carols are sung around the cross, what better way of starting this year’s festivities.
Although early evening, it is already dark and very cold with a cloud free sky. A light dusting of frost begins to glisten on road surfaces as it reflects the bright moon and street lighting, shining the route to our annual outdoor venue.
Large groups of well wrapped up smiling happy families and friends flock together, crowding in front of the ancient village cross which dominates the area – with steps, worn from hundreds of years of visitors, carved from a huge piece of outcropped sandstone, leading to a square pavilion with pedimented gable to each side and four ball finials, topped off with an ornate weather vane.
As the smell of warm mulled wine and hot food fill the air, emanating from various street sellers, the crowd of people grow to a few thousand – now moving towards a small brass band and choir, housed in an illuminated open sided articulated lorry trailer, which they are using as a stage. They are joined by our favourite town crier and master of ceremonies for tonight’s carol singing – Peter Powell, who always dazzles us, with his red black and gold regalia – along with his red rosy cheeks and hand bell – indeed his continuously jovial outlook on life reminds me of Santa himself!
As the band plays Christmas music, our friendly town crier leads each song, with much loved and well-known carols that we can join in – and for those who might struggle a little with the words, help is always at hand with a welcome song sheet – distributed to the joyous but freezing crowd.
Christmas spirit is all around, as groups of families and friends, as well as strangers and a few puppy dogs, sing together collectively in good cheer, all snuggly wrapped up with scarves, hats and gloves. Our collective misty breath, bellowing out into the cold winter’s night, all enjoying the moment. Children’s faces light up and smile as they too enjoy the carols and as they look forward to the next magical day!
With the final throngs of a second chorus of Jingle bells, our carols are over for yet another year. The music fades and the town crier wishes us all a wonderful and happy Christmas. The huge crowd disperses, full of Christmas joy and good cheer. As we walk along the now freezing roadway, mince pies and hot drinks are offered to us by local churches – such a thoughtful and very welcome gesture of giving – which Christmas is all about!
Story by: John morris