Ilkeston - Christmas Is Coming
w/e 18 December 2011
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Christmas is coming and Saturday 17th December was expected to be the busiest shopping day of the year but in Ilkeston, there didn't seem to be many more shoppers about than a normal Saturday morning.


Many shop windows were full of seasonal goods and in a newsagent's on Bath Street a collection of books and annuals were prominently displayed. When I was a boy, Christmas wasn't Christmas without a selection of annuals as presents with "Rupert" being top of the list. Along with the "Beano" and "The Broons" they are obviously still produced but I can't imagine they are as popular today as they were back in the 1950s!
Musical Organ

There may not have been many more pedestrians about than usual but this image hides the truth about the traffic. Free parking over the Christmas period had enticed many more vehicles into the town centre and this picture of the Musical Organ playing on the Health Centre car park in South Street was snapped between passing cars. The building on the right in the background is the former Baptist Chapel that dates from 1784 and is one of the oldest buildings still standing in the town and currently trading as "The Hop" public house.
SED Music Society

The organ was one of the attractions of the Christmas Festival and on the third and final Saturday of the event, another group of musicians, these from the South East Derbyshire Music Society, were playing Christmas carols on the Market Place.
Helter Skelter

The Market Hunt was still taking place this week but the marquee and Craft Fair that stood outside the library last Saturday had been replaced with a Helter Skelter. On production of a receipt from local traders, free rides were on offer.
Market Stalls

Although I didn't actually come down the slide, it was too good an opportunity to miss so I climbed the steps for the unique view of the market stalls.
Christmas Tree

From the top of the Helter Skelter it was also possible to look down on the town's Christmas tree which is standing next to the Cenotaph part of which is visible on the left.
St Mary's Church

The same vantage point gave a good view beyond the Christmas tree and the market stalls to St Mary's Church where another festival is currently taking place.
Tree Festival

The church is decorated throughout with many trees that have been provided by local groups, organisations and businesses as part of St Mary's inaugural Tree Festival.

From the entrance door right up to the altar (above) and in St Peter's Chapel from where this picture was captured there are trees of all shapes and sizes.

And in a corner of the church is a crib showing the nativity scene but anywhere in the church provides a quiet place to reflect and escape the hustle and bustle of the shopping frenzy in the final week before Christmas.

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