Let there be light! (But not too much of it…)

Christmas is the one time of year where people seem to get a bit of a lift, especially from the anticipation in the run-up. There’s a break from work on the horizon, maybe a bit of socialising and present giving. It’s all very jolly.

Christmas lights lying on the floorDecorating our homes, offices and town centres also buoys the spirits and adds to the general merriment.

However, and maybe it’s just our perception, there does seem to be a proliferation in the last year or two of extravagant lighting schemes appearing on more and more houses. Of course, these are lovely to look at. The ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs of the children (and many adults) tell you that we love to see the effort that has been made to lift the appearance of what would otherwise just be the darkened street we see all year.

The unsettling thing, though, is that this all needs electricity. It’s true that a few LED lights don’t exactly demand the building of a new power station to keep them on, but when every other house is getting competitive with Blackpool Illuminations, there’s a cumulative demand that could really start to add up.

In times when energy prices are soaring, when we know the impacts we’re making on the planet and we are actively trying to find ways to cut power consumption, well, it’s just a bit unsettling. A wreath on the door just doesn’t keep up with the Jones’s, it’s true, but it also doesn’t need plugging in…

This isn’t a ‘bah, humbug’ sentiment. Christmas is great. The lighting is lovely to see. It would just be a shame if it were to get out of hand to the point where there was a backlash.

All that said, if you have 20 seconds, take a look at this video. It might be the most amazing Christmas display you’ll see this year – and in this case, it’s residents raising money for charity in a Staffordshire village (wouldn’t fancy some of those electricity bills though!).


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