Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Christmas Lights and London Traffic

Pic of back of cars and red lights blocking yellow box junction and pedestrians

There are some beautiful Christmas lights in London this year. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to get the best view due to the constant stream of buses, taxis and cars.

My favourite lights are the angels lining Regent Street. The lights build up gradually to fill the wing segments.

Pic of Angel Christmas Lights hanging high between buildings

There are gold angels lining the route from Piccadilly Circus towards Trafalgar Square.

The lights on The Strand emerging from Trafalgar Square are the same as last year.

My second favourite Christmas lights are in New Bond Street. They are a combination of gradually completely fans, feathers and centrepieces as in the photo below.

Central light in New Bond Street

Feather Christmas lights line New Bond Street

Oxford Street's lights aren't quite as dazzling. The street benefits from the additional lighting on the front of the major stores like Selfridges, Marks & Spencer, House of Fraser and John Lewis.

Just caught Selfridges on camera before a bus arrived
Christmas light on front and side views of House of Fraser store
House of Fraser lights caught on camera at a quieter moment

The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) is using the Oxford Street Lights to celebrate the launch of its Little Stars Campaign.

Little Stars Christmas Lights in Oxford Street, London

Unfortunately, my photos do not really do the lights justice. It is hard to video or even get the right angle for a photograph when your view is constantly interrupted by double decker buses and constant traffic. Never mind all the honking horns and occasional sirens. Seeing emergency vehicles stuck in traffic was worrying.

Pedestrians have to cross Oxford Circus between cars stuck in traffic
Fire engine stuck in traffic between Regent Street and Piccadilly Circus

It simply wasn't possible for me to take a picture of the Regent Street angels from the best angle. I would have been flattened by at least one bus and several taxis. I couldn't help thinking back to the wonderful Lumière London event of last January. We were able to view the wonderful lights unimpeded by traffic.

It was easier to view the lights at Sloane Square and Duke of York Square as they have larger pedestrianised areas.
Christmas Lights in Sloane Square, London

Christmas Tree in Duke of York Square, Chelsea

And you could admire the decorations safely from all angles and all levels at Westfields Shopping Centre. The lighting just seemed to get better and better as day passed into night.

Christmas Lights at Westfields Shopping Centre

Still, it would be great to enjoy a walk underneath the angels of Regent Street - even if it was just for an evening or two again.

Karen Andrews is a freelance French to English translator/transcreator, content writer and editor. She has a strong background in marketing and project management.

Email Karen for further information via karenanglicityen@gmail.com in French, German or English.

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