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MELKSHAM Christmas Lights team have overcome Wiltshire Council’s new festive lighting rules by trialling mobile scaffolding to make sure the town is dressed for the festive period.
Last month, Wiltshire Council introduced a ‘Festive Lighting in the Highway’ policy and guidance document, which bans Christmas lights from being strung between lighting columns and the use of ladders against lighting columns.
In response, the town started a campaign against the new rules. However, the Melksham Christmas Lights group want the town to know that they are doing what they can to achieve the spectacular display again this year. The team of volunteers, most of whom are over 60 with some having volunteered for around 30 years said, “We’ve done it a particular way for the past 30-odd years, so why have they suddenly asked us to stop now? But we’ve tried to find a solution that adheres to the authorities and also keeps the town happy.
“Luckily, two members each had DIY mobile scaffolding, and during one of our weekly meetings we thought they would be a good way to overcome the rule that we are no longer allowed to lean ladders against the lampposts.”
On Wednesday 9th October, the volunteers took down the Medieval Flags in the Market Place using the new mobile scaffolding.
They added, “We’ve used this as a rehearsal day to see if the mobile scaffolding could work, and so far it’s looking promising. We still have the same enthusiastic volunteers as we had last year and a time schedule to stick to, so Christmas will happen! We’re ready to get started!
“It will become interesting when we have to use the scaffolding on uneven surfaces, or up the high pavement, but we will take care. We are hoping to get started on the display as soon as possible.”