It’s the time of year that without cultural cues like sweet sticky chocolately smells or repetitive music from (mostly) happy times in our childhood, we’d stay at home. But that would be derelicting our civic duty to shop and engage with our favourite brands downtown!
So someone hires the chocolate peanut man and pays the PRS for tunes and erects a great massive lit-up billboard to help spread the word about the SHINY LIGHTS that will now be twinkling above Guildford High Street until well after Santa’ been. Bring the people out of their caves. Lure them with lights and music and chocolate, because the machine needs to be fed!
It’s an important part of following the money – who pays for the lights? Who pays for the publicity around the lights? Why is it so important for people to keep shopping? What would happen if they didn’t? What is the payoff to retailers of having an intense commercial season like this? What are the costs to people? What are the costs to the environment? Why the appeal to charity? Some of these questions are easy to answer, some of them are a bit more meaty. All of them lead to further questions.