The Swift family, who live on Laurel Crescent in Nuthall, have been decorating their house to delight neighbours and visitors for the past 16 years and have raised a phenomenal total of more than £125,000 for charity in that time.
Half the money raised at the Nuthall Christmas Lights is given to Nottingham Hospitals Charity’s Hayward House Appeal. Last year the family raised more than £26,000, half of which went to Hayward House, the palliative care centre at Nottingham City Hospital.
This year the Swift family will, for the third time, be joined by the much-loved Siddiqui family from Channel 4’s Gogglebox, to switch on the lights at 6pm on Sunday 17 November. Hundreds of spectators attend the switch-on each year, and thousands of people visit the attraction over the festive period.
Visitors are admitted free of charge, but can make a donation to the Swifts’ two chosen charities. Tony Swift, his wife Wendy, and stepson Adam, chose to fundraise for Nottingham Hospitals Charity after Wendy’s father, John Sheeran, was diagnosed with terminal cancer 15 years ago. John received treatment at Hayward House and the family chose to thank the staff for the care he received.
Tony said: “We have been working on this year’s display since the end of September and there are a couple of new features which have been added to the display this year. We look forward to this time of year and seeing people’s faces lit up with excitement as the lights are turned on. It has become a Christmas tradition for people from near and far.”
The Siddiqui family from Gogglebox, made up of dad Sid, and his sons Bassit and Umar, became involved in the Nuthall Christmas Lights in 2017, when they helped switch on the lights for the first time.
The Siddiqui family said: “Christmas is a time for following tradition. The switching on of the Nuthall Lights is slowly, but surely, becoming a Siddiqui tradition. We are so grateful to be asked for the third year to be part of the exciting event. It is fantastic to see the selflessness of the Swift family and the community spirit of Nuthall each year. That is why we love to be a part of the lights switch on. We have seen first-hand how the money raised supports so many people and it is very humbling to be even a small part of it.”
People attending the switch-on can buy mince pies, mulled wine and small Christmas gifts from the family’s on-site shop. Santa visits the house every Friday and Saturday 6pm-8pm until Christmas Eve, and children can meet him in his Grotto and receive a free goodie bag.