VETERAN Dispatch reporter Denis Robinson broke new ground in Linby this week as he performed the switch on of the village’s Christmas lights.
The ceremony was combined with a carol-singing session and a total of more than 450 people flocked to the event.
Denis, who has been a reporter for 60 years, said he was delighted to have been invited by Linby Parish Council to do the honours.
“Particularly as this year Linby won the coveted accolade of being selected as the Best-Kept Village in the whole of Nottinghamshire,” he added.
Denis stressed that the Dispatch had always regarded picturesque Linby as the jewel in the crown of the area it covered and he hoped the village would always be able to retain its unique rural charm.
Hucknall and Linby Mining Community Brass Band, conducted by Paul Whyley, played for carols around the tree.
Choirs from Linby-cum-Papplewick Church of England Primary School and Leen Mills Primary School, Hucknall, as well as the Laudamus Church Choir, took part and there were also poetry and Bible readings. The rector of Linby and Papplewick, Canon Keith Turner, was compere.
Five residents of Sherwood House Nursing Home, in Linby, together with staff members, also attended the event, at which refreshments - including mince pies - were served.
Resident Michelle Dodge, who was present with her nine-year-old daughter, Demi, said: “We really enjoyed it. The tree looks beautiful when it is lit up.”
Mother-of-three Alexjo Tuggey said: “I enjoyed the opportunity to join in singing some traditional carols.”