Countdown to big Christmas lights switch-on in Wigan village with more than 30,000 bulbs

One of the most illuminating traditions of Wigan's festive season launches this Friday!
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Paul and Gill Molyneux have been dazzling spectators with the Christmas lights display outside their home on Shevington Lane for more than a decade now, and this year will be no different.

The switch-on takes place on December 1 at 5pm after the customary countdown.

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Paul Molyneux at last year's annual Christmas light display which covers the house and garden of the Molyneux's home on Shevington Lane, Shevington, raising funds for Wigan Infirmary's Rainbow Ward, where their children were treated a few years ago.Paul Molyneux at last year's annual Christmas light display which covers the house and garden of the Molyneux's home on Shevington Lane, Shevington, raising funds for Wigan Infirmary's Rainbow Ward, where their children were treated a few years ago.
Paul Molyneux at last year's annual Christmas light display which covers the house and garden of the Molyneux's home on Shevington Lane, Shevington, raising funds for Wigan Infirmary's Rainbow Ward, where their children were treated a few years ago.
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The display also raises funds for the Rainbow ward at Wigan Infirmary, as the couple’s thank-you’for the care their three sons have received during stays there.

Last year £3,442 was raised, and over the years a total in excess of £30,000 has been collected.

Paul said: "The display has grown over the years and this year it is different but still has more than 30,000 bulbs to light up the lane.

"We usually have a good turn-out for people to do the countdown to the switch on."

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He added: "We have been doing the display for around 12 years which raises funds for the Rainbow children's ward at Wigan Infirmary.

"There is a box at the front in the fence for donations and every single penny goes to the cause, we don’t take anything out for lighting or electricity cost.

"This is a cause close to our hearts as we have had the boys treated in there several times over the years, and the care and quality of their stay has been incredible and this is a way of giving back."

There were some concerns the annual display might not go ahead after Paul said last year that he might not be able to continue because of the cost of living crisis and sky-high electricity bills. Last year’s spectacular cost £4,000 to mount, with the family footing the entire bill themselves so all donations went to the hospital.

Paul said: “I mentioned it to a few people that I may not be doing it and they sounded disappointed as it had become a tradition for many to come and see the lights with their kids or grandkids.”

The Rainbow childrens’ ward at Wigan Infirmary is a 34-bed unit which offers a wide range of services and looks after a multitude of conditions and illnesses.

The money raised by the Christmas lights display over the years has been used to buy a range of items needed by the ward, including buggies for parents with babies, a play kitchen, microwaves, radios, mugs and crockery, high chairs, computer games, books and lots of toys.

The lights will be on every night from 5pm to 10pm until January 6.

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