A CHRISTMAS lights extravaganza which has raised thousands of pounds for a West Yorkshire Hospice over the years is to continue in memory of the grandfather behind the project.
Jon Sharpe spent weeks setting up a dazzling display of thousands of lights outside his and wife Jennifer’s home in Featherstone ahead of every Christmas for more than 20 years.
Hundreds of people flocked to see the annual spectacle and more than £20,000 has been raised for Pontefract’s Prince of Wales Hospice.
Mr Sharpe, 74, who was suffering from lung cancer mesothelioma, died on November 11.
Mr Sharpe’s vast lights display have been donated to Farmer Copley’s farm shop on Pontefract Road, Purston near Featherstone.
His widow, Jennifer, 66, and five-year-old grandson Aiden, will switch on the Christmas lights at Farmer Copley’s at 5pm this Friday.
The lights will be on at Farmer Copley’s from 5pm to 8pm every night until December 18, and are set to continue to attract crowds and raise cash for the hospice.
Mrs Sharpe said : “I’m delighted the lights will be carrying on, but I’m very sad Jon won’t be here this year to see them.”
Semi-retired electrical engineer Mr Sharpe’s displays featured around 30,000 bulbs and included animated figures and sound and lights displays
The trees, driveway and pond all twinkled into life alongside moving illuminated reindeer, penguins, other festive characters, a laser display and sound and lights displays.
Prince of Wales Hospice fundraiser Tracey Mearns, said: “It’s even more important that we carry on the tradition of the lights fundraiser in Jon’s memory and this is something his wife Jennifer is still very keen to do and support.”
Heather Copley said: “Farmer Copleys are pleased to help carry on the fantastic work Jon and Jenny have done in previous years, all in aid of the Prince of Wales Hospice.
“We hope that the walk through element to this year’s lights will be enjoyed by all the community, and thank Jon and Jenny for passing the gauntlet to us and hope we live up to their very high standards.”
As well as Santa making an appearance, Rock Choir, the UK’s largest contemporary choir will be performing when the lights are switched on at Farmer Copley’s for the first time on Friday.
- Jon Sharpe’s funeral service will take place at Pontefract Crematorium from 12pm on Thursday December 10, followed by a wake at the neighbouring King’s Croft Hotel.
Mrs Sharpe said anyone wishing to attend the funeral will be welcome.