Pudsey Bear switches on Bury lights

PUDSEY Bear may not have quite the crowd-pulling power of Liz Hurley but the Children in Need emblem still caused quite a stir when he arrived in Bury St Edmunds.

PUDSEY Bear may not have quite the crowd-pulling power of Liz Hurley but the Children in Need emblem still caused quite a stir when he arrived in Bury St Edmunds.

The fundraiser did for Bury St Edmunds what the Hollywood star did for the Cirencester last week – turn on its Christmas illuminations.

Flanked by St Edmundsbury mayor David Lockwood and Bury mayor Bob Cockle, Pudsey last night threw the switch to herald the festive season.

St Edmundsbury Borough Council tourism officer Justin Wallace said the Cornhill was transformed into a magical world of fairground rides and wizardry.


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Harry Potter was very much in evidence with hundreds of children vying to win the prize for most convincing lookalike of the young wizard.

Continuing the Potter theme, Father Christmas arrived on the back of a car recovery truck ensconced in an old Ford Anglia.

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On stage entertainment included singing from the St Edmundsbury Male Voice Choir and music from local band A4Teen.

Bury Town Council pumped in £6,000 to bolster the town's lights this year and Mr Wallace described the finished result as particularly impressive.

He said the newly restored front wall of the ancient Moyse's Hall made last night's celebrations even more spectacular.

He said the switch-on marked the start of the town's late night shopping events. From now until December 18, every Thursday evening will see the town thronging with crowds of Christmas shoppers.

Mr Wallace said: "The town has lots of individual shops where shoppers can get that little something different and, of course, there is Bury's famous café society to attract people.

"Our car parks are also within easy walking distance of the shops so instead of park and ride people can park and stroll."

He said one of the most popular Thursday night events likely to be next week'sChristmas charity market, when the Buttermarket and Cornhill are expected to be crammed with stalls, with goods for sale.

On Sunday, "buddies" will be on hand to help disabled and elderly people with their shopping. The buddies, wearing yellow smiley badges will be available between 11am and 4pm.

They help with pushing wheelchairs and carrying shopping bags and are an extra pair of hands and eyes for those who need them. For more information contact the Bury Volunteer Centre 01284 766126.

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