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Archive - Thursday, 11 November 2010
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Hero’s switch-on duty
BRAVE sapper Ashley-James Hall will lead the countdown at Colchester’s Christmas lights switch-on.
Former St Benedict’s College pupil Ashley, who lost his legs in a blast in Afghanistan, will join Colchester mayor Sonia Lewis for the ceremony at 4.45pm on Saturday, November 20.
The 20-year-old will lead the crowd in counting down outside the Town Hall, before Mrs Lewis reveals this year’s much-heralded lights, created by Blachere Illuminations, the firm behind festive displays on the Champs Elysees in Paris and London’s Regent Street.
Organisers are keeping tight-lipped about what will be unveiled, revealing only that the display is themed around the Twinkle Twinkle Little Star nursery rhyme.
Michelle Reynolds, chairman of the Colchester Retail and Business Organisation, said this year’s switch-on would have a strong military theme.
She said: “We have got Garrison FM involved as well and it is nice to have someone from the Army doing the countdown.”
Ashley’s father, Stephen Hall, said his son was delighted to be invited to take part, and added it was further proof of the town’s support for the Armed Forces.
He said Ashley hoped to join the Royal British Legion Remembrance Sunday march in Colchester, as long as he is discharged from Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in Birmingham, tomorrow.