THE annual ‘A Light for Christmas’ carol service will be held at St Peter & St Paul’s Parish Church in Pickering on Sunday.

At this service the town mayor, Coun William Oxley will switch on hundreds of lights on a Christmas tree in the parish church. Each light represents the life of someone special.

The name of every person for whom a light shines will be entered into a Book of Blessings which will be placed next to the tree throughout the Christmas period. The lights will shine until Epiphany, Sunday, January 6.

Invitations to the service have been sent to every house in Pickering.

Although donations are welcome, there is no charge for a light, and extra forms are available in church.

Father Antony Pritchett said: “We’ve been doing this service now for the past five years and it just grows and grows.

“Going by the number of forms I’ve already received requesting lights for a loved one this year’s service will be even bigger.

“For many it’s an important start to Christmas, and the amount of people who come into church over Christmas and the New Year just to see a light shining for their loved one is staggering. It’s all so very special.”

Forms should be returned by Friday for inclusion in the Book of Blessings.