It’s that time of year again when London comes to life with festive lights in all the major shopping areas. I’ve been out and about checking them out for you and my view on 2015 is that some new ones are great, some areas have kept with old favourites which is no bad thing but some of the major shops have not made much effort this year and one major street is just not up to our high standards.
Carnaby Street’s 2015 offering wins, as usual, it’s fun, it suits the street and is new and fresh and even looks good before it’s completely dark!
Trafalgar Square hosts the Christmas tree sent each year by the people of Norway to express their ongoing thanks for our support during the 2nd World War. This year it’s been a bit battered by a storm which hit the capital just after it went up, so it’s slightly crooked but as lovely as ever, especially when reflected in the fountains.
Oxford Street has stuck with its massive baubles which work well for them and I was pleased to see that South Molton Street has kept with their elegant blue arches.
Covent Garden has gone for enormous mistletoe this year which I liked and had some fun to it and they have kept their enormous Christmas tree and the striking silver reindeer.
This year’s big disappointment is Regent Street where they have replaced their successful reindeer antlers with the 12 days of Christmas with small shiny triangles which are too small to bring much light and large circles with projected video animations which I couldn’t quite fathom and the circles are not always lit on both sides. Apologies for a poor photo to match!
The Strand has joined in this year with a jolly look in blue which brightens up this part of the city:
Two of our major stores, Selfridges and John Lewis, usually have inventive and playful festive window displays but this year they are unimpressive and so have not made this gallery of the light show of 2015.
London hosts ice rinks outside many of the famous landmarks such as the Tower of London and Somerset House, and the Natural History’s rink is one of my favourite sights especially when the kids have a go.
Finally, I visited the posh shopping streets of Mayfair to see their lovely display, again kept from last year, of delicate, feathery lights.
I hope you enjoyed this visit to London at Christmas, it’s a great time of year to come here and even the shorter days are a bonus as you can see the festive lights from late afternoon onwards before enjoying a mulled wine in a cosy bar.