DAYS of heavy rain stopped to allow a record crowd of people to enjoy the switching on of the Byfleet Christmas lights.

“It was a fantastic night,” said Grahame Osborn of the Byfleet Amenities Group which organised the event last week.

“We’ve never had so many people on the green. It was absolutely packed. The whole village seemed to come out and support us,” he said.

It was the first full Christmas lights event in the village since the lifting of the pandemic restrictions.

“The last few years have been quite low-key affairs but this year we were back with a bang,” Grahame said.

Hundreds of people on the village green, including a large number of children, enjoyed stalls serving food and drink or providing games.

“Most of it was free or for very little cost,” Grahame said.

“The idea was not to make money out of it but to have a community event.”

Musical entertainment was provided by the Ukulele band, the Ukeaholics, who played Christmas songs and were joined by the choir from St. Mary’s C of E Primary School who also sang carols.

The countdown and lights switch on was done by the Mayor and Mayoress of Woking, Cllr Saj Hussain and his daughter Faaria Sahi.

They were joined by the Byfleet Parish Day “Royal Family”.

The main event sponsor was Green and Parry, the village’s independent estate agents.

Funding also came through Surrey County Council, arranged by Amanda Boote, the Byfleet county and borough councillor.

“We would like to thank all the local businesses who gave time and money,” Grahame said.

“It was a brilliant community event.”

For more pictures of the event, see the 24 November edition of the News & Mail, in shops now