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Volunteers add sparkle to Herne Bay's infamous Christmas tree

The spruced-up Christmas tree in Mortimer Street, Herne Bay

by Gerry Warren

Volunteers have stepped in to spruce up Herne Bay’s infamous Christmas tree after it was ridiculed for being the worst in Britain.

They got together to give the fir some much-needed sparkle with tinsel and decorations following outcry over its "disgusting" appearance.

People were left fuming and even booed when the original tree was unveiled last month in front of a 1,000-strong crowd.

But locals were left even more furious when the council decided to replace the tree with another that "looks even worse".

The revamp group was led by dad and local firefighter Steve Enwright, who said the town had suffered as a result of the negative publicity.

He said: "I was a bit disappointed with the stick Herne Bay got so decided to try and do something about it."

In just five days, he managed to recruit a team of supporters and the help of local businesses and Serco staff to transform the 17ft tree.Grace Walker, five, lends a hand with the decorations

Grace Walker, five, lends a hand with the decorations in Herne Bay

He said: "Homebase, the Co-op and Canterbury Garden Centre all provided decorations and I have to say the two guys from Serco who arrived with all the equipment to make sure it was safe were brilliant.

"I've got kids and really enjoy getting into the Christmas spirit and just decided to see if it could be improved.

"I got help from another local resident, Kim Walker, who did a lot of chasing around, and a couple of friends as well as the coastal towns manager Chris West who helped get Serco on board."Herne Bay Christmas trees

Workers putting new lights on Herne Bay’s original Christmas tree (left) – before it was replaced with a tree that "looked even worse"

Mr Enwright said: "It looks a lot better now and we even had a singer come along to help celebrate on Sunday morning.

"We don’t want to be in this position next Christmas so I am organising a meeting at the angling club to try and plan ahead for next year."

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