Lights 'a beacon' to local community at Christmas
A BEACON to a community's spirit.
That's how Cranmore's Christmas tree was described at the big 'switch-on' by Mayor Marcella McGarry.
She said: "The tree and its lights have become a focal point."
The mayor was joined by residents, members of the Cranmore Co-Op and excited local children for the now annual event.
Councillor McGarry said: "The tree has been a beacon for each of the past five years.
"It shows the spirit of the local people."
Santa arrived by Fire Engine and with his helpers handed out presents.
Staff and children from the Abbeyquarter Afterschool sang festive carols.
There was a live crib in the yard of the Co-Op building.
The FAI Cup also made an appearance.
Fr Dominic Gillooly performed a special blessing.
He said: "The community in Cranmore always make Christmas a very significant time.
"It's always a geat effort and the live crib makes everything so real.
"All involved deserve credit.
"The tree is a very welcome sight in Cranmore."
John and Lucey Davey from Farmyard In Your Schoolyard brought the crib.
It included 'Moneypenny' the Dexter cow-a traditional breed from the time of the Celts.
'Lambie' a Suffolk sheep, 'Bramble' the goat, 'Dazzler' the pony, New Zealand rabbits, hens, ducks and a Christmas dove also attracted a lot of attention.
John said: "The kids love to come and see live animals in the crib.
"We always get a good reaction."
Cranmore Community Co-Op's Jim McGuire thanked all those involved in staging the event.
This included staff from the Regeneration Office and TUS workers.
Jim said: "We're all delighted to see the Christmas tree again in Cranmore .It's now a regular feature at this time of year."