Beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Displays go up at garden centre
- Credit: Angel Lester
The city might be in the middle of a heatwave but that hasn't stopped a garden centre ringing their sleigh bells.
The team at Sprowston Garden Centre in Norwich has decided to set up Christmas early and make up for lost time last year.
Never the stranger to Christmas, the garden centre usually begins planning Christmas around July.
Bosses say it's always a collaborative journey with team members agreeing themes and layouts before the displays take shape.
But - they warn - there's myrr to this process than sprinkling some fake snow about.
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Paul Marlow, the garden centre manager, said: "It takes around eight weeks minimum to set up these displays so an early start is a must.
"Many of our customers are excited to see Christmas in its infancy. "
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Mr Marlow added: "It's something that they can look forward to, especially after the challenging times we have all been through over the last 18 months."
Mr Marlow said that spreading Christmas cheer so early is a clear case of trying to make up for last year.
He went on: "As the country faced further lockdown at a time that we all look forward to spending a few days with family and friends."
He said that every single team member plays some part in creating the Christmas department and the pride taken in what they achieve goes a long way to keeping spirits high.
He added: "I would have to say that seeing the amazing response from our customers, of all ages, is enough to make it all worthwhile."
Last years' experience was affected by the pandemic, with Mr Marlow sharing that "Santa had to self-isolate of course."
So, what can be expected from this year's display?
Mr Marlow said: "Without giving too much away, we want to create an experience for our customers.
"Wow factors at every turn, the company is really backing us in providing all the tools we need to turn our ideas into a reality. Just watch this space."
When asked about the hottest item on display, Mr Marlow said: "I think a singing, dancing tree, affectionately known as Norbert is a must for every household."