Mysterious disappearance of Nottingham's Christmas tree solved - as 60ft evergreen takes up position
NOTTINGHAM'S third and hopefully last Christmas tree for the year has now been put up in Old Market Square.
The first tree, which was merely inches tall, was placed on the large stand on Monday morning as a joke while crane operators waited for the real thing to turn up.
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By 9.10am the real tree had arrived all the way from Scotland – but as it was hoisted into position they realised it was 15 feet too small. It was sent straight back.
Then yesterday afternoon, as people walked through the square, the third tree – all 60ft of it – was lowered into its stand to mark the beginning of the festive period.
Pete Trayling, 66, of Porchester Road in Bingham, who saw the tree being put into place on Monday, returned yesterday after it had been removed.
He said: "I just came past and said that's funny, there was definitely a tree there yesterday!"
He added he was looking forward to the transformation of Old Market Square into the Winter Wonderland, which is already under way. It will have stalls selling craft gifts, different foods, a bar and rides.
His wife Linda, 58, said: "They really do make a good effort in the square. There's always something going on."
Pete Aindow, 50, of Woodland Grove in Colwick, was in the square yesterday.
"I don't think I'd have noticed 15ft difference," he said.
Meanwhile brother and sister Kevin and Wendy Sheldon, who live in Havenwood Rise in Clifton, joked they had thought about whether the tree had really gone up on Monday.
Wendy, 48, who saw the Nottingham Post video of the 45ft tree going up, said: "I was saying to him, 'It's on the video', but we started arguing.
"Kev was saying 'I can't see no tree' so I went into town and saw there was definitely no tree so I had to apologise."
With the tree finally in place, the lights will be switched on by Paralympic gold medallist Richard Whitehead at an event on Wednesday, November 21, which will also mark the opening of the Winter Wonderland.
Councillor Dave Trimble, Nottingham City Council's portfolio holder for leisure, culture and tourism, said: "Nottingham's Christmas tree in the Old Market Square is always an impressive 60ft but when this year's arrived yesterday the suppliers had sent a 45ft one by mistake.
"Once they realised their mistake they took it back and have replaced it with a 60ft one which arrived in the Old Market Square yesterday afternoon.
"Nottingham's Christmas trees are enjoyed by up to a million people. They are the centrepiece for Christmas celebrations across the city."
Entertainment will begin at 5.30pm on November 21 with street theatre performances and music from Nottingham Music School. The official switch-on is at 6.25pm. For further details. see www.mynottingham.gov.uk/christmas
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