Christmas Lights project Q&A

The lights project is almost at a close so I thought it might be good to try and answer some outstanding questions about how it has gone and lessons learned. If you have a question then get in touch and we’ll answer it.

Q1. When did the project start?

March of 2012. Erica had decided that it was about time the village had a permanent arrangement for lights and wanted to step up to the plate.

Q2. Why bother?

While most people are supportive of the concept of Christmas lights, there are those who think they are a waste of time and do nothing for the village. We, and other villages have supported this, believe that having lights in the festive season brings cheer to those seeing them which is a good enough reason for me, but they also are beneficial to businesses and the general aesthetic of Knaphill.

Q3. Why haven’t ALL buildings got lights?

Despite best efforts and negotiation, some landlords did not give permission for a bracket to be attached to the building. We’re hoping that we can persuade them to have one next year.

Q4. What did this cost?

Final figures aren’t in yet but to date it has been around £1100; there are some outstanding labour charges to come in. Money came in two forms – donations from shop owners and Knaphill Athletic, and from a grant from the Local Committee (Woking), supported by Cllr Diana Smith.

Q5. What have you learned from this project?

Quite a lot – some good experiences and some bad. We have found that while people want a lot for the village there are only a minority willing to give up their time to get it done. We’ve found that people can be generous with their support and indeed that the vast majority are extremely happy about this particular project. We’ve found that despite best intentions, projects have a habit of slipping from schedule, especially volunteer ones!

Q6. Why was Erica selected as the Project Leader?

Erica wanted to give her time and skills to Knaphill and to make this her project for the village for the benefit of the residents and businesses here. In short, she asked and we heartily supported her.

Q7. Will anything change for 2013?

Possibly. The brackets are permanent fixtures so they won’t be altered however, we’ll look at the process for installing the trees and lights for ways to make it quicker and easier, and we’ll look at how the trees might be funded in future. Other changes may occur!

Q8. Can we use the brackets for anything else?

Yes. There are curled pieces of iron on the brackets should anyone want to hang baskets for the summer and the brackets have the ability to hold flags etc should Knaphill want to celebrate anything (such as the Jubilee this year for example).

Q9. Why wasn’t I asked if I wanted to be involved?

Quite simply due to time and resource. Erica couldn’t get around to involving everyone, for which she feels quite badly about, but should you wish to be involved next year then please get in touch or leave a comment below.

Q10. I have a question, who do I write to?

Please write to the Editor by email (editor@knaphill.org) or via the Contact Us page.