Good response to Clane Community Council Christmas lights appeal

Parish Choir may not be able to sing at turning on ceremony

Henry Bauress

Reporter:

Henry Bauress

Email:

henry.bauress@leinsterleader.ie

Good response to Clane Community Council Christmas lights appeal

Clane Christmas light due to be turned on soon

Clane Community Council has begun preparations for putting  Christmas lights in the town of Clane.

It is hoped to flick the switch on the weekend closest to December 7 or, possibly, sooner.

The volunteer group has called on the public in the area to support the lights work by donating to a GoFundMe page.  “To help support the voluntary efforts and complement donations from businesses and Kildare County Council we have set up a GoFundMe page. We would be very grateful for any support anyone connected with Clane might like to contribute towards this project,” it said in a message.

The response has been good so far.

A lot of work goes into the putting up the lights. Each year around 200 hours of volunteer work is involved.

Council member, John Kennedy, said the Clane Christmas lights are a significant collaboration between the residents and the businesses in Clane.

It is also “generously” supported by the Local Property Tax grant from Kildare County Council.

 The project normally marks an end to the year of volunteer-run activities in Clane Community Council and its subcommittees. “It is a project we all look forward to,” he said.

Expanding on financial request, Mr Kennedy said that every year the council needs to renew some lights. “This year we would also like to introduce one or two new runs if time, weather and funding permits. We are receiving a grant from Kildare County Council this year, but we would love to supplement this with additional donations from anyone associated with Clane via the GoFundMe campaign at www.gofund.me/4d766671.”

He added: “We have been delighted with the response to date, and it demonstrates how much the residents and businesses of Clane value the contribution the lights make to the community.”

“All of the lights are low-power LED with electricity supplied courtesy of the various businesses on Main Street, and the Abbey Community Centre.

 Another business kindly sponsors the hoist equipment they use for installation, and yet another the storage space they need when the lights are down. 

On finance, Mr Kennedy said: “Our key financial outlay are the lights themselves. The other key resources of course are the volunteers who install the lights...and then come back to take them down.”

The not so great news is that  it looks like they won't be able to hold their popular countdown event this year with the Parish Choir singing at the turning on ceremony.

When will the lights go on: “We usually aim to switch on the lights on the weekend closest to December 7 but if everything works out this year we hope to switch them on sooner,” he said, adding that they are making good progress on installation. “We are all looking forward to seeing Clane shine for Christmas.”

The community council  have also decided to defer awarding its community award, the Claonadh Award, until 2021.