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Letter: Challenges to the Organisation of Christmas Lights Need to Be Understood

Published on: 23 Nov, 2018
Updated on: 23 Nov, 2018

From Amanda Masters

general manager of Experience Guildford

In response to: Christmas Lights for Tunsgate Please

I think Cllr Rooth needs to understand the challenges we face with organising lights for different parts of the town. Here follows an excerpt of an email sent to Tunsgate businesses last week explaining some of our difficulties.

Wednesday 14th November: “There will be light wraps on the lamp posts on Tunsgate, going up today I am told by GBC. It has been a bit of a struggle as we put in the permissions to Skanska (who own the columns) back in the summer. They overlooked the four columns on Tunsgate [Arch] and only contacted us on 16th October saying we couldn’t do it:

“I must confess to making an error when I looked at your application. I missed the ‘Tunsgate’ items. Regretfully, the County Code of Practice for attachments states that only lamp columns of at least 8M high can be used for electrical attachments; this is due to the high risk of interference/ vandalism.” (Skanska)

“This left us a month to come up with an alternative. Skanska agreed for us to put battery operated LED wraps on the columns, because if they are pulled down they won’t electrocute anybody. GBC assure me they will monitor them throughout the period. But we will all keep an eye on them, I am sure.

“EG looked into many options for Tunsgate. We considered attaching lights to Tunsgate Quarter, but understandably the owners wouldn’t allow it. I know that free-standing Christmas trees were brought up as an idea by a few of you. We asked Highways and we were again told we couldn’t because of potential vandalism.”

I hope readers might begin to understand how tricky it can be to get lights in all parts of town, not just Tunsgate. Experience Guildford will continue to attempt every year to update and enhance the current lights in town.

Unfortunately, it isn’t as easy as buying a job lot of lights, climbing a step ladder with a hammer and nails and hanging them where we feel like it each year!

I do hope though that readers enjoy all the lights in town this festive period.

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Responses to Letter: Challenges to the Organisation of Christmas Lights Need to Be Understood

  1. Helena Townsend Reply

    November 26, 2018 at 1:44 pm

    Challenges are understood but installations in poor taste are not.

    There was nothing wrong with the original High Street lights, instead of buying new ones the money could have been used for lights in other parts of the town. Instead, we have the cold white ones in the High Street which are not festive at all and now the introduction of the new warm white ones in the upper High Street. The two do not work together and the whole just looks like a total miss match. As my father used to say, “poor taste to a very high standard”.

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