March 25, 2021 11.15 am This story is over 14 months old

Christmas not cancelled in Boston, as council funds lights

Boost for community and businesses

Boston Borough Council agreed to give £5,000 a year for the next three years to support a community group that puts up Christmas lights in the town.

This comes after the Christmas in Boston community group struggled to fundraise from local businesses in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact this has had on businesses.

The £5,000 per year will go towards the lighting installation costs to allow the work of Christmas in Boston to continue.

The decision was unanimously voted in favour of in the Boston Town Area Committee (BTAC) on Wednesday evening, despite some proposals to fund for just one year, followed by annual reviews depending on the borough’s economic situation.

In the meeting, Cllr Stephen Woodliffe said: “This town is suffering pretty badly and we need to show a degree of confidence in the town and in the shops particularly.”

Cllr Anton Dani, Mayor of Boston, added: “[This will] give them reassurance for the next three years and will make people more confident and more happy to look forward to the next Christmas as well that there is money there, there is a support.”

Photo: Boston Borough Council

Up to 2015, Boston Borough Council had a contract costing around £35,000 per year with a lighting provider.

However, it confirmed it would no longer be funding festive lights and in 2016 a projection display was in the town for Christmas. This display was not well received and people wanted to see the lights back in Boston.

As a result, Christmas in Boston was formed in 2017, a community based group of people who have donated over £25,000 worth of electrician hours.

Council papers said: “Christmas in Boston benefit the whole community of Boston, brighten the streets and consistently working together for the people of Boston.”

Christmas in Boston has invested around £35,000 over the four years into Christmas lights, trees, brackets and equipment but is losing valuable members who support the project.

In recent years, the council has supported the group with £1,425 being awarded for the mandatory testing to be completed on the lamp posts.