Dec 1 2011 by Gary Fanning, Hamilton Advertiser
MORE than 100 people didn’t let last Thursday’s torrential rain dampen their spirits at the Christmas Lights switch-on in Larkhall.
Jim Robinson, chairman of Larkhall Christmas Fayre Committee welcomed revellers to the big switch-on of the Christmas Lights outside Trinity Church in Union Street at 6.10pm.
After short speeches made by the Rev. Lindsay Schluter, Trinity Church’s minister, Margo Higgins, from St. Mary's Church and Councillor Jackie Burns, the crowd counted down to the switch on to much applause.
Larkhall singers Alison and Lindsay Avis ended the event by singing “Hallelujah”.
Councillor Burns, deputy leader of South Lanarkshire Council, said: “Over 100 people were there but despite the torrential rain all went well.”
Mr Robinson said: “The attendance at both events was well up to our expectations, especially considering the weather conditions.
The switch-on ceremony was conducted in the rain to a good crowd and with the expected contributions from Councillor Burns, Donna McLellan representing St Andrew’s Hospice and the Rev. Lindsay Schluter.
“Father Rooney from St Mary’s couldn’t make it but Margo Higgins deputised for him.
“Larkhall Universal Connections provided the sound equipment and a light show for the frontage of the church which undoubtedly helped the attendance.
“As a bonus, they also volunteered two young singers, Alison and Lindsay Avis, who sang ‘Hallelujah’, beautifully, to open the ceremony.”
The Christmas lights switch-on was the start of a series of festive seasonal activities.
The Christmas lights run along the whole of the main street.
Larkhall Christmas Fayre Committee organised a concert at St Machan’s Church on Tuesday, showcasing talents from all over Larkhall.
Pupils from Larkhall Academy, Machanhill Primary, St Mary’s Primary and Craigbank Primary took part in the concert along with young people from Universal Connections.
The Church at The Cross, The Machan Trust, 1st Larkhall Girls’ Brigade, Dance Fusion and Candid Theatre and local dance groups performed at the event.
Meanwhile, the annual Christmas fair was held in the town’s King Street on Saturday between 9.30am and 1pm.
The opening of the fair by Provost Russell Clearie was slightly delayed while the marquee erectors made sure everything was doubly secure in the rising wind.
However the wind didn’t deter the public from picking up their Christmas presents at the fair.
Santa was moved from the smaller tent to the main marquee.
Jim Robinson added: “The uptake of stalls this year was the best we’ve had and augurs well for the future.”
Fair organisers held a best-dressed shop window competition which was won by Lavender Lane.