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Friday, 19 November, 1999, 21:53 GMT
Boyzone star gets in Christmas spirit
Ronan Keating shouts to his adoring fans

Hundreds of Boyzone fans turned up to watch the group's lead singer Ronan Keating switch on the Christmas lights in London's Oxford Street.

In a live TV and radio broadcast he wished fans a happy Christmas and New Year before turning on the illuminated decorations, which stretch for a mile-and-a-half.

Unlike previous years, there was no sponsorship - last year the lights were dominated by giant Bird's Eye logos.

This year's display, which cost 400,000 to put on, broke with the commercialism of past years and tries to evoke the true spirit of Christmas and the dawning of a new millennium.

Keating was joined by Westminster Abbey Boys Choir, who came from evensong celebration of St Cecilia's Day, the patron saint of music, to sing Ding Dong Merrily on High and We Wish You a Merry Christmas.



The financial burden for the lights was shared by members of the Oxford Street Association, the street's main retailers, and the business campaign group London First.

More than 250,000 light bulbs are being used to light up the street in a display which needs 10 miles of cable.

Earlier this month Spice Girl Victoria Adams switched on the lights in nearby Bond Street, and footballer David Ginola did the same for Regent Street.


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10 Nov 99 |  Entertainment
Posh Spice lights up London

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