Celebrating New Year with a difference

A town's traditional New Year celebrations couldn't go ahead in 2020, so residents came together through photographs to see in the start of 2021.

Oskar and Freija Corfield with mum Jenni Visser
Oskar and Freija Corfield with mum Jenni Visser

Montgomery's usual gathering on Broad Street, which attracts hundreds of people each year, had to be cancelled because of the restrictions on social meeting.

Instead, a video was prepared for residents which had a goodwill message from the mayor, Haydn Andrew, together with a countdown to midnight and a message pre-recorded by the town crier, Sue Blower.

The Inns family

The video, which was edited by Claire and Mark Weston, was enhanced by heart-warming photographs contributed by a number of local people, showing them linking arms as though they were coming together at midnight, with a soundtrack of Auld Lang Syne from local singers and musicians, each recorded separately at home the preceding week.

Mark Michaels said: “Superb. Montgomery will always find a way. Community, community, community!”

Cyndy Humphreys, whose three generations of family appear in the video, said: “It’s great to see people giving up their time and doing positive stuff to cheer up this brilliant community in these tricky Covid times.”

The Dickinson family

The video was viewed by more than 1,600 people within 12 hours of being posted just before midnight, and met with great enthusiasm from many residents, and former residents, when it was shared on social media.

Paul Inns said: “Well done everyone involved in the production.” Denice Jaunzens, postmistress, added: “What a lovely way to end the year.” The video was viewed from as far as USA, South Africa, and New Zealand.

Mayor Haydn Andrew said: “Thank you everyone involved in this uplifting video for their contributions and hard work in putting it together. Happy new year to all.”

Memories of previous New Year’s Eve gatherings were shared on social media on December 31. Residents also took to their doorsteps or windows with lights at midnight, to connect with their neighbours in a different way this year.

The video is available to view on the town’s facebook page at fb.me/montgomerypowys and YouTube channel via tinyurl.com/MontyCCC

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