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Lighting up Wainwright’s Yard this Christmas

Over 20,000 bright lights welcome you into Wainwright’s Yard this Christmas. It’s a brand new festive look and feel for the Kendal location. It’s not just about the fells this season – you’ll experience classic glittering gold and silver lights, paired with contemporary decorations; a ball tree, giant asteroids and an ice white ceiling with icicles.

You’ll see the lights very soon and we’re really happy to be lit up early. It’s all about spreading good cheer at a gloomier time of year. With such an exciting new lighting scheme, we just couldn’t wait to see how it works. We hope you’ll get used to them, even if it feels a little early for you.

We spoke to Sam Potts at the Festive Lighting Company to tell us more about the new design and her role in helping us to achieve it. Actually, we think she’s more appropriately named Mrs Christmas…

Can you tell us more about the new lighting design Sam?

Yes! There will be over 20,000 LED bulbs in Wainwright’s Yard this Christmas and the new design aims to keep the traditional theme of the location with its colours, whilst adding a little contemporary twist too. We’re putting up a 4.6m ball tree in the courtyard, 24 asteroids – four of these we class as giant as they are 1.5m each in size. Then thousands of twinkly ice white and warm white bulbs make up what we call a ‘swag light ceiling’ which will drape all the way along the Yard.

How do you get them all up and ready?

A team of 6 people work throughout the night to fix them for us. The group are actually Streetlight Engineers for the rest of the year, but kick into the festive spirit from November onwards. It’s also their job to take them down, which no-one likes to think about too much just yet.

Your job is unique – can you tell us a bit more about it?

For me, it’s Christmas 365 days a year. And so many people ask me how I do it. The simple answer – you have to love it! September to January is pretty challenging with arranging the logistics and then we start all over again with the planning. I’ve really enjoyed working on this new scheme as I was able to get creative, and it’s lovely to see a blank canvas turn into a reality. Of course, I always have to balance what works with the location and what’s practical. I work on festive lights all over the North of the country so there’s a real logistics challenge with all the timings. Wainwright’s Yard is one of the first to see its lights this year and I hope you all like the new design. I’ll be visiting and chatting to people to see what they think.

You can see the Christmas lights in Wainwright’s Yard from Saturday 3 November.

Look out for our next post – an idea of how to tackle the bulk of your Christmas shopping in a day, with a little time to schedule a break in for yourself too.

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