Christmas on the Hill attracts big crowd
THIS year's Christmas on the Hill has been hailed a success after record crowds flocked to Staple Hill to enjoy the festivities.
The much-anticipated annual event, which took place this year on December 1, is seen by many as the start of Christmas.
High Street, Broad Street and Page Road were transformed with a party atmosphere as various activities took place along main roads as well as in churches, shops and community buildings.
Choirs, bands and dance troops provided entertainment with characters from Star Wars proving a big hit with the children.
Later in the afternoon visitors crowded around the Christmas tree in Fountain Square ready for carols and the light switch-on, courtesy of 11-year-old charity fundraiser Jake Skinner who lives in Staple Hill.
The event had the double bonus of helping boost trade in the area as visitors purchased gifts, food and refreshments from local traders.
Staple Hill councillor Shirley Potts said: "Our thanks must go to all those supporters whose contributions made Christmas on the Hill such a great success. The town centre was alive with numerous activities culminating in the switching on of the lights by Jake Skinner and the Christmas Angels followed by carol singing around the Christmas Tree. The indication was that Christmas had come to Staple Hill."
Fellow councillor Ian Boulton said: "It is fantastic to see so many people visiting our town centre and enjoying their time in Staple Hill.
"Having even more traders getting into the spirit of the event was really encouraging as we work to give them an opportunity to entice new visitors into their shops and showcase their businesses."