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ST Mary’s Christmas Tree Festival will mark its 10th anniversary this year with a staggering 500 festive displays.

The festival will be opened today by Claire Lomas, Melton’s paralysed London Marathon heroine, at a ticket-only wine and buffet event from 7.30pm.

The festival will then open to the public from Friday at 9am, with last admission at 8pm, to coincide with the town’s Christmas light switch-on.

It will also open from 9am until last admission at 8pm on Saturday and Monday.

On Saturday a carol concert among the trees, led by Reverend Kevin Ashby, will run from 5pm for about an hour and on Sunday a Songs of Praise style event will take place from 6.30pm. Claire Lomas will attend the event, which will include music from the Hathern Brassband. It is expected to run for an hour after which time the festival will close for the evening.

The festival will open for its final day at 9am on Tuesday and close after last admission at 3pm.