Christmas arrived early in Epsom’s town centre, with the lighting of the town’s Christmas tree! As we begin the run up to Christmas, residents and workers of Epsom shared what they believe the festive season is about.

Christmas tree lights illuminated the Epsom night sky for the first time this year when they were switched on in Epsom Marketplace on Thursday evening, creating a festive atmosphere as the people of Epsom enjoyed The Take That Experience as well as fairground rides such as the ferris wheel and stalls selling candyfloss.

For many, the turning on of the Christmas lights is the highlight of this time of year, however this did not dilute the true essence of Christmas for those I spoke to. This weekend advent starts, for Christians advent is 4 Sundays before Christmas. Advent means “getting ready for” something you have been waiting for the celebration of the birth of Jesus and yet when I asked people what advent makes them think of the most common reply was “calendars”, as many admitted they have “no idea” of what it means. After all who doesn’t love the excitement of both children and adults in that tiny shaped piece of chocolate each day, naturally alongside a really cringey Christmas joke?


For some the first thing they associate with Christmas is spending time with family and friends and “helping people and giving back” and they do this by giving to charities ranging from Guide Dogs to Epilepsy. People should be focusing on what “Christmas is really about, which is giving and the birth of Jesus” said a charity worker in the Ashley Centre, who goes on to say that “it is the season of giving, but I think we should be generous all year, if you are able, you should, as you get much more from giving something than receiving”. The atmosphere of Christmas many said encourages people to be more kind than any other time, in my opinion this is because it creates a sense of community as everyone is jolly, whilst one went as far as to say it “is sad how Christmas is now about receiving” instead of sharing, as it is not only about giving presents but giving happiness, giving help and “giving love”.


As advent starts and Christmas arrives I challenge you to do a good deed every day instead of eating an advent chocolate, as Christmas is about kindness shown, kindness that can also be shown every other day of the year.


By Bethan Massey, Rosebery School