Neighbours declare lights war on Jonathan Ross
WITH huge public criticism over his prank calls to Andrew Sachs, being suspended from his job and then having paparazzi camping outside his door, you d think not much more could go wrong for Jonathan Ross. But now a neighbour looks set to add a crushing
WITH huge public criticism over his prank calls to Andrew Sachs, being suspended from his job and then having paparazzi camping outside his door, you'd think not much more could go wrong for Jonathan Ross.
But now a neighbour looks set to add a crushing blow to the Hampstead Garden Suburb star's lot, by vowing to outdo his Christmas light display.
Last year Nick Robeson from Corringham Road was fed up with Mr Ross' festive lights stealing the attention of his two sons Ben, eight, and Edward, six, so decided to take him on with his own dramatic display.
And this year, despite Mr Ross' challenging few months, his neighbour isn't relenting in laying down the gauntlet.
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"Last year it was a bit of a joke - Jonathan Ross vs. us," Mr Robeson said.
"This year with all of his pressures, Jonathan's gone for more of the same as last year but after going to Vegas we've decided to push the boat out a bit.
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"I've done something a little extra - I've got an 8.5ft bear and its cub as well as lights across the house and hedges. Already this year people are putting notes and chocolates through the door thanking us.
"Christmas is a time to relax, smile and have fun and in this marketplace it is particularly important.
"If this gives people a little smile I am absolutely delighted with it."
The war of lights is particularly unusual in the Suburb where the conservation body, the Suburb Trust, often block alterations to the appearance of properties.
Last year the Robesons even received a sarcastic fake letter cheekily claiming to be from the body offering an award to the Romford-style lights on their home.
Even though the trust may not have gone that far in embracing the lights, it does seem to be turning a blind eye to a bit of temporary silliness at Christmas.
"We have all these rules and regulations living here - Christmas is a time of year when we should let our hair down and relax," Mr Robeson continued.
Another neighbour has already borrowed the Robesons' decorations from last year to spruce up their home.
Mr Ross is usually the only resident to let his decorations do the talking at special times of the year. On Halloween, he even had dancing aliens entertaining the Suburb's trick or treaters.
So even if Mr Robeson's latest attempt doesn't steal Ross' decorating crown, at least he seems to have won his two most important fans back.
His youngest son Edward said: "The lights are bright and colourful and lots of neighbours stop to look at them, someone even dropped sweeties through the letterbox. I want more lights next year so it's even more colourful."
However his older brother, although just as enthusiastic, suggested his dad's competition may have gone far enough.
Ben said: "I really like the lights. I really like the bear. I don't think we should have anymore though - this is enough.