Kendal has been beautifully adorned in Christmas lights ready for the festive season, with the big switch on taking a rather different format this year.

A switch on with a difference, the town’s annual event was a much more low-key affair without the usual crowds and cheers due to Covid-19.

The Westmorland Gazette: WORK: The team working hard to set up the lights

Despite this, mayor Alvin Finch, alongside Father Christmas, was there on the typically rainy evening to witness the lights’ big unveiling.

The night was captured and shared with the public via a video by Naik Media on Vimeo, which showed teams working hard to install and prepare Kendal’s sparkling lights and magnificent tree.

The Westmorland Gazette: POSTIONING: Putting the tree in its place

“It was a great event and well-received,” said Cllr Finch.

“We have had such a difficult year and I think in Kendal and South Lakeland we keep our chins up and keep smiling.

“I hope that we can have a merry Christmas and when we get to the new year, we will be going into a better world hopefully.”

The video also incorporated messages from businesses and local community figures, as well as messages from Kendal Fire Station and Cumbria Constabulary, who joined together to wish Kendalians a Merry Christmas and a safe and happy festive period.

The lights have offered some welcome cheer to the community, illuminating the town’s grey façade, and marks the beginning of what is set to be a markedly different Christmas than what people are used to.

“It has given a definite boost,” said Cllr Finch.

“This virus has not just affected us physically, it’s mental as well.

“But Christmas is coming up and seeing the trees and lights it helps.

“The town council and South Lakeland District Council and BID have made an effort to make people smile and give them that lift.

“And it’s worked.”