17 Dec 2021 Community
Derek Highe raises vital funds for The Kirkwood and creates another magical Christmas lights show
Christmas has come early at Robin Royd in Mirfield again this year as Derek Highe’s annual festive lights bid to raise thousands of pounds for The Kirkwood
Derek Highe has once again created a magical festive treat with his amazing Christmas lights show and, in the process, is raising thousands of pounds for The Kirkwood.
Derek is going into his 19th year of putting on his festive show and is still loving the fact he brings a smile to so many people's faces as they view his twinkling lights.
Derek has been raising money for The Kirkwood since 2003 and has raised well over £50,000 over the years.
His beautiful light display, which takes over six weeks for Derek and his family to set up, attracts hundreds of wide-eyed children and Kirklees families every year as part of their festive celebrations.
All Derek asks for in return is a donation to The Kirkwood.
The Robin Royd Avenue display in Mirfield peaks a lot of interest annually and has won Derek multiple awards over the years, including the 2016 Pulse Radio ‘Contribution to Charity’ award and the MyMirfield ‘Best Community Event or Attraction’ award.
This year's theme is The Enchanted Forest, with animals and a train running through the heart of the illumations.
On creating this year's display, 64 -year old Derek said: "I've always wanted to do something with a train and finally I found the train I wanted. I do like what I've managed to create this year. I think it's one of the best I've done.
"I really love the fact people come and see the lights and it brings a smile to their faces. I find it very humbling that some people now come every year as part of their Christmas tradition.
"It takes six weeks to put them up and it's hard work, but when children walk past and they smile when they see my creation it makes it all worthwhile."
2021 has been a hard year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, Derek is thankful that he can once again bring joy to people's lives through the power of his creation and also raise vital funds for a cause he, like thousands of others, passionately believe in.
He said: "Looking back over the last year it has been awful. However, I hope that when people come to see my lights it brings them some positivity.
"The reason I picked The Kirkwood to raise money for is because unfortunately as you get older you hear about people needing help from them. Everyone I ever speak to that has been touched by The Kirkwood says how amazing all the staff are that work within The Kirkwood family.
"It is such an important cause to so many people across Kirklees. It's such a vital resource, there are thousands of people who fundraise for The Kirkwood and they all do a terrific job. I am just happy I can fundraise for the charity by creating what I do."
The Kirkwood's Community Fundraiser, Joanna Doherty, said of Derek's event: "Derek has been an amazing supporter of ours for many years. His amazing Christmas lights bring joy and happiness to hundreds of people in Mirfield and across North Kirklees.
"Derek has raised an unbelievable amount of money for us over the years and has helped us to support life, which is what we are here to do."
Derek would also like to thank the following people and companies who help him put on his lights show every years.
Award winning Shire beds
Alan Waring of Independent Electrical Services
Pegasus Signs of Huddersfiel
Horne McIntosh interior architects
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