THE Christmas lights and decorations are up and on in Union Hall, with Willie O’Donovan and his wife Diana’s garden transformed once more into a festive wonderland.
And the good news this year is that the display has survived Storm Barra as Willie reports ‘everything is up and running’.
It has been 42 years since Willie decided to put up his Christmas lights and decorations in the garden at the front of his house, a decision that has seen thousands of euro raised for charities for the past 20 years.
‘I was over in America just before Christmas, and of course they are big into decorating their homes and gardens, so I brought a few decorations and lights home. That’s how it all started,’ Willie told The Southern Star.
‘I love Christmas, all the lights and decorations and then seeing people get so much joy out of them, so it’s wonderful to think that we can do all this and raise money for charity as well.’
Willie and Diana choose a different charity each year and last year the display raised over €6,000.
‘The whole village is lit up here in Union Hall,’ Willie said.
This year we have a new addition to our Christmas display, a Santa cabin. And now that the storm has past we hope people will come out to see the lights,’ he said.
This year, Willie’s Christmas display is raising funds for Cork Cancer Research and the Community Air Ambulance service.
‘We hope that everyone who comes to see the garden enjoys the Christmas atmosphere and that we will be able to give some much-needed help to this year’s chosen charities who do such good work for the people of West Cork and beyond,’ Willie said.