Carols in the Square 2014
Christmas may still be 2 days away, but here in Battersea the festivities got going in earnest with Carols in the Square on Tuesday 2 December. As usual this popular comunity event was organised by the Friends of Battersea Square and generously sponsored by John D Wood & Co.
It was a very chilly evening, but - fortified by mulled wine and mice pies, and Sambrooks beer, and cookies being handed out by staff from Gordon Ramsay's restaurant London House - the large crowd was in good spirits. There was also the possibility that the number on the back of their song sheet would be drawn out of the hat and win one of the prizes donated by local businesses.
A cheer went up as the entertainment got going when Mardi Brass struck up a rousing seasonal melody. This professional brass quintet has performed at most (if not all) of these events. As usual Ben Thomas, the headmaster of Thomas’s School, was the master of ceremonies and this year he was joined on stage by a very furry reindeer, otherwise known as John Haythornthwaite, Thomas's Director of Music who conducted the enthusiastic renditions of Christmas carols and other festive songs by the crowd together with the choir of St Mary’s Church, Battersea and singers from local primary schools including Westbridge and Thomas’s Battersea.
At 7pm Councillor Stuart Thom, Mayor of Wandsworth,switched on the tree lights, helped by five year old Amelia, a pupil at Thomas's school. And then the skies above the square erupted in a riot of colour with a magnificent firework display which lasted several minutes. While the singing continued, the police cadets did a good job of rattling their buckets to persuade people to give to two local charities - the Katherine Low Settlement and the Battersea Summer Scheme. Another good night for Battersea!