WATCH: Christmas lights turned on across the county
Meath's towns and villages got a real festive boost over the last few days with Christmas lights turned on across the county.
Meath County Council has sponsored 30ft Christmas trees in each of the local electoral areas and have contributed to lights and Christmas trees in all the main towns and villages, while local traders have also contributed to lights in the various towns.
Because of Covid concerns, the lighting up ceremonies were and are being livestreamed on Facebook and the message from around the county is shop local and support local business.
Meath County Council points out that parking incentives remain in Navan, Trim and Kells for Christmas: in Navan and Trim, if you pay for one hour, you get one hour free and in Kells, 90 cents pays for two hours parking.
The Mayor of Navan, Cllr Padraig Fitzsimons switched on the lights in Navan on Friday last and Navan Silver Band provided music for the occasion.
“I would urge people to shop local and keep the money in this area, it contributes to the local economy,” he said.
Cllr Fitzsimons said the town was looking very well with the crib in Trimgate Street and there had been great feedback from shoppers.
In Trim, Cllr Joe Fox switched on the Christmas tree lights and the Courthouse illuminations on Thursday. The Council has also made a contribution to the rest of the Christmas lights in the town and to lights in Enfield, Summerhill, Kildalkey, Longwood, Rathmolyon and Ballivor.
“I would urge everyone to support local businesses,” said Cllr Fox. “They are the people that have sponsored local sports clubs and organisations during the year and without your business they won't survive.”
The Christmas lights in Kells, which are organised by local business were switched on at the weekend and the council sponsored Christmas tree will be lit, on Thursday evening.
Local businesswoman, Jess Olohan says the town looks fantastic and many local businesses are putting on impressive displays on their own premises.
“We are urging people to buy local and we are supporting the Mi Meath voucher campaign,” she said.
Dunboyne couple Annie and Johnny McEnroe were the stars of the show at the lighting of the Christmas tree in Dunboyne by Cllr Nick Killian. Annie is 102-years-old and has been at the lighting up ceremony for a number of years, while Johnny is 100 years old.
He said that the Council had also provided funding for festive lighting in Dunshaughlin, Ratoath and Kilmessan.
Cllr Suzanne Jamal switched on the lights on the Ashbourne Christmas tree in a ceremony that was livestreamed to the public.
“We need to mind each other well and look after our mental health in these difficult times,” she said. “I urge people to support local business and hope you all have a very happy Christmas.”
The lighting up of the Christmas tree at Bettystown was performed by Cllr Elaine McGinty. Christmas trees are also being lit in Julianstown, Slane and Lobinstown.
“I would urge people to support local businesses, it is very important for the local economy,” she said.