From Willy Wonka to Banksy, Wonder Lights is illuminating

LIGHT UP THE NIGHT Doris Waugh, Holly Dye, Freya Fletcher and Sassy and Sylvie Phelines at the help yourself bracelet tree in Newcomen Road

From Willy Wonka to Banksy, Wonder Lights is illuminating

19th December 2018

SIXTY households took part in this year’s Wonder Lights community art event, in which houses across the St John’s area of Tunbridge Wells decorated their front windows in festive fashion.

The event, which was being held for the second time, saw local residents touring the streets to look at all the creative displays.

Entries included animals, monsters, Willy Wonka, Banksy and a striking 1914-18 tableau commemorating the centenary of the end of the First World War.

The organiser, Mat Waugh, paid tribute to the creativity on show, saying: “The effort was outstanding. Hopwood Gardens was a particular highlight for me with a Wishing Tree festooned with some quite moving hopes.

“A two-storey giraffe on Stephens Road caught my eye, too.

“It was brilliant to see so many neighbours, new and old, out enjoying the event.”

Magical

Kate Sharpe, a Scout Leader from East Cliff Road, said: “It was great fun. Picking our Scouts theme was the easy bit. The whole family got involved in setting up the lights.

“We loved finding houses on the map and discovering the different displays. We’ll definitely be taking part next year.”

Children’s illustrator Hannah Shewan-Friend, who lives in Liptraps Lane, added: “I came across Wonder Lights online and thought it was an excellent idea to bring art into the
local community.

“This was my first Wonder Lights event and I went with the dark and spooky theme of the magical workings of the world of Inky Babble.”

Mat, who is also a children’s author, hopes the idea could become a regular annual show.

“We had more people taking part from a wider area this year, with more visitors, too,” he said.

“I think people like it because it’s easy, non-commercial and full of surprises, and that is something that I hope will appeal every year.”

You can watch a video of this year’s event by searching for Wonder Lights 2018 at youtube.co

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