Ilkeston - Christmas Week
w/e 27 December 2009
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Tree Decorations

The build up to Christmas has been going on for several weeks (months?) now so here are a few more images all taken in Christmas week itself. We'll start with a close up of some of the baubles, beads and trinkets on the Christmas tree in St Mary's Church that we helped decorate on Saturday morning.
Market Musicians

Meanwhile on the Market Place on Saturday a number of events had been arranged to help ease the stresses and strains that go with Christmas shopping. As well as the musicians (pictured) there was also a Punch and Judy Show, a climbing wall, a birds of prey display and further down South Street, a fairground organ. Together with the "Santa Saturday" at the Erewash Museum they were all part of Ilkeston's "Winter Festival" weekend although bad weather caused the cancellation of a Lantern Parade.
Christingle Service

Carols & Lessons ServiceOn Sunday we were back in St Mary's - twice in fact. First of all, there was the Lessons and Carols Service (left) in the morning where the children also performed a Nativity Play. Then in the afternoon just before darkness fell, we were back for the annual Christingle Service (above). The church is normally packed for this service but the snowfall and freezing temperatures meant that far fewer people braved the elements this year. However when the lights were dimmed leaving only the burning candles to illuminate the building, those that did attend enjoyed a truly magical atmosphere.

Bramcote CrematoriumMarkeaton CrematoriumOn Monday we joined hundreds of other people and visited the Bramcote Crematorium (left) and the Markeaton Crematorium (right) to add our holly tributes to the fast-filling wreath-lined pathways. This year we were also able to add some holly (above) from the tree in our garden to our tributes to family members who are no longer here to share Christmas with us.
Shopping Madness

We thought we would complete our Christmas shopping on Tuesday and Wednesday so as to avoid the crowds panic buying on Christmas Eve but it seemed as though everyone had the same idea. It took this lady (above left) almost five minutes to find a gap in the traffic to cross Station Road in safety as almost every man and his car rushed about their business. And on Wednesday, it was chaos on the Tesco car park (top right) and in the store it was shoulder to shoulder as people jostled their way around with even more streaming in. There is supposed to be an economic recession on but if the major companies declare that they have not done as well as usual then I think the only thing they are being economical with is the truth!
Fancy Dress

We have a regular appointment every Christmas Eve at Peter James Hairdressing on South Street but on the way we called in at John's News on Bath Street were the staff were all sporting festive headgear. At Peter James, the staff not only sport headgear but also don fancy dress for the day and this is the reason for our Christmas Eve visit. Each year they adopt a theme and in the past they have been pirates, pop stars, nursery rhyme characters and super heroes among others but this time the theme was the emergency services. It is perhaps fitting at this holiday time to remember the fire service, the doctors and surgeons, the police force and all the emergency services that have to keep working throughout the holiday period.
Civic Carol Service

With snow and ice still lying the temperature dropped even further as evening approached but it did not deter a sizable crowd that turned up for the seven o'clock Civic Carol Service around the Christmas tree on the Market Place. The Mayor of Erewash wished everyone a Merry Christmas and then Santa Claus put in a brief appearance to distribute sweets and fruit before continuing his global trip.
'Illy 'Oleys

We didn't leave home on Christmas Day and spent some quality time with the family and on Boxing Day, although we didn't really need to go out, a brisk walk through the fast disappearing snow on 'Illy 'Oleys (above) into town enabled us to work of some of those Christmas pudding calories. Some of the shops were open but more had remained closed and there were quite a number of people about either looking for bargains in the sales or just taking a walk like ourselves.

It still annoys me though that many take advantage of the absence of traffic wardens and find it necessary to drive their vehicles in a pedestrian zone (right) even though there is free parking on the adjacent car parks during the Christmas period. But don't get me started on that - I'm trying to chill out for the New Year!

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