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Festive lights display in Croxley Green raises £4,000 for charity
A Croxley Green pensioner renowned locally for his impressive Christmas lights display has enjoyed his "best year ever" raising £4,000 for various causes.
Dave Edwards, 79, and his wife have put on a festive light show at his Lancing Way home for each of the last 34 years, earning him the nickname Mr Christmas.
This year’s total is more than £500 higher than 2011’s record-breaking collection and will be used to benefit the Hospice of St Francis, Malvern Way School and POD, a charity providing children’s entertainers in hospitals.
He is due to visit the hospice later today to present a cheque for £2,000; the other two causes received cheques last week.
Mr Edwards said: "We did very well, the total was just under £4,000 but two people gave us cheques to make up the difference, otherwise we would have do so ourselves.
"Considering people have not got that much money to give up at the moment that is a brilliant total.
"We were really helped by the Masonic lodge that gave us a cheque for £500.
"We got a wonderful response to the lights themselves and we met so many people this year, we always try to give sweets to the children when they come to look at them.
"It was very, very nice, the best year ever."
The electricity bill for the lights and the cost of replacing broken decorations mean it costs the couple roughly £1,000 per year to stage the event but every penny donated goes to the chosen charities.
Despite his advancing years Mr Edwards says he has no plans to stop the event, which has become an important part of the festive period for many residents, but may need a little help.
He said: "In all the years we have been doing it I have not had a single complaint.
"I have a friend who is a builder and he and an employee came and took the lights down on January 6 and asked me to let him know when they need to go back up again.
"Everyone appreciates what we do and they don’t want us to stop doing it.
"I hope to still be doing it when I’m 85 although I may not be able to go up the ladders at all by that point.
"It would be bad if we stopped now but I think we have more or less committed to doing it for the near future."