Poll: Is Lewisham Council being Scrooge-like by not putting up Christmas tree in town centre?

This Is Local London: Matt Smith at the empty spot would a Christmas tree would stand in Lewisham town centre Matt Smith at the empty spot would a Christmas tree would stand in Lewisham town centre

LEWISHAM Council has been labelled "Scrooge-like" for not putting up a Christmas tree in Lewisham town centre.

Funding for the tree, which usually stands in Lewisham High Street, could not be found from local businesses this year while the council says there is no Christmas budget.

Resident Matt Smith has slammed the council's ‘bah humbug’ attitude saying more should have been done to encourage shoppers into the town centre.

The 41-year-old, who lives off Lewisham High Street, said: "It isn’t doing anything for Christmas in Lewisham.

"We are crying out for people to go out in our high street stores and spend locally and not go to the big shopping centres.

"I felt slightly beyond disgust, but it is a sign of the times - how much does a Christmas tree cost?

"It’s been there every year and then this year, nothing, and I just thought it was really strange.

"I thought ‘bah humbug’."

The theatre producer contacted the council when he first spotted the tree’s absence.

An email reply from the Mayor of Lewisham’s office read: "Unfortunately there will not be a Christmas tree in Lewisham town centre this year.

"Officers have approached local businesses and the local assembly for funding but sadly no monies were secured.

"Suffice to say, given that Lewisham has to find at least £85m cuts over the next three years, there is no separate budget for Christmas trees."

A spokesman for the council said: "“The government’s squeeze on public spending has meant that the Council has had to make some tough decisions on its spending priorities.

“One of the savings implemented has meant that for the last three years, there has been no funding for Christmas trees.

“Community organisations, local businesses and Local Assemblies work together to secure funding to provide trees where possible.

“If requested, the council has ordered trees and arranged for installation and decoration on behalf of those groups who have raised funds.

“Unfortunately, no sponsorship or funding was available for a tree in Lewisham town centre this year."

What do you think? Is the council right to be frugal or is it being stingy? Add your comments below and vote in our poll.

Comments (7)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

12:22pm Mon 9 Dec 13

white rabbit9 says...

Very weird as these cult leaders of ours worship the christmas tree.
Very weird as these cult leaders of ours worship the christmas tree. white rabbit9

8:02pm Mon 9 Dec 13

applause says...

The true meaning of christmas has long gone. We don't need a tree to remind us of 'its time to be greedy and over spend'.
The true meaning of christmas has long gone. We don't need a tree to remind us of 'its time to be greedy and over spend'. applause

11:38pm Mon 9 Dec 13

zampa says...

Typical Lewisham.
Typical Lewisham. zampa

9:37am Tue 10 Dec 13

sarfflondonbird says...

At least other cultures won't be offended by stringent budget cuts when it comes to funding their festive days will it? Shame on the council. It's only a tree not like it's a carnival process.
At least other cultures won't be offended by stringent budget cuts when it comes to funding their festive days will it? Shame on the council. It's only a tree not like it's a carnival process. sarfflondonbird

3:31pm Sat 14 Dec 13

goldenbroomboy says...

I don't think that one Xmas tree would make a huge difference. As for blaming the ConDems, it's not as if parliamentary seats in Lewisham Borough are marginals.
I don't think that one Xmas tree would make a huge difference. As for blaming the ConDems, it's not as if parliamentary seats in Lewisham Borough are marginals. goldenbroomboy

1:06pm Thu 19 Dec 13

CaptainJustice says...

No wonder people are getting fed up with councils and suchlike petty political squabbles favouring/upsetting local people the you read of lords clocking in at the lords for 30 mins for a daily £300 day "allowance" ?
No wonder people are getting fed up with councils and suchlike petty political squabbles favouring/upsetting local people the you read of lords clocking in at the lords for 30 mins for a daily £300 day "allowance" ? CaptainJustice

9:58am Sat 21 Dec 13

paulbexleyheath says...

i was in lewisham the other day and sure looked a bit dark and depressing . what lights they had up the lamp post may as well not been there. how much does a tree cost then????
they proberly spend more on tea and biscuits in the council offices each year . tight ****
i was in lewisham the other day and sure looked a bit dark and depressing . what lights they had up the lamp post may as well not been there. how much does a tree cost then???? they proberly spend more on tea and biscuits in the council offices each year . tight **** paulbexleyheath

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree