Prestonpans community council defends decision after locals complain about lack of Christmas lights

An East Lothian community council has explained its decision to not pay for a temporary Christmas tree, after locals complained about the lack of a tree and lights in Prestonpans on social media.

Prestonpans Community Council published a statement on Facebook, in response to a post published on the local community page, which expressed disappointment at the council’s failure to set up a Christmas tree for the second year running.

The council explained that the previous executive team had decided not to pay for a temporary Christmas tree, which would have cost roughly £600, and instead decided to put money towards permanently ‘dressing’ some existing living trees with lights.

The council noted that the trees, which were dressed in late Autumn, cannot yet be lit up, as they are still waiting for East Lothian Council electricians to connect the lights to lampposts.

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Their Facebook post read: “This is work the previous CC Executive team valiantly attempted to have put in place for several months prior to their departure and the new CC executive team are STILL chasing for completion”.

The community council said that they are currently in discussions with East Lothian Council about the possibility of installing a tree in Coronation Gardens.

The post also addressed the lack of lamppost lights, which the council claimed was partially due to the sockets needed to hang lights being missing from lampposts. They also said: “When the new Community Council executive made a visit in November to the storage shed where these lights are kept it wasn't at all clear how many of them were in a fit condition for use this year”.

Prestonpans is currently without Christmas lights, due to delays in council electricians connecting them.

The council wrote: “It's worth remembering that the members of the Community Council are unpaid volunteers. Like those individuals posting nonsense, we have jobs, lives, hobbies, family and other things to be getting on with too”.

They suggested that the local public consider reaching out to Community Councils and offering help with ongoing projects.

However, many locals were displeased with the council’s statement, with some commenting on the post, asking why these issues had not been communicated to them earlier.

Others suggested that the community could crowdfund to raise money for some lights.

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