CALL me Ebenezer Scrooge if you like, but if I go into one more shop this week to be told by some cheery assistant how many weeks it is until Christmas, I swear to God I will lynch someone.
Tesco has yule logs and mince pies aplenty on their shelves. The weird thing is the sell-by dates don’t even run into November. Are we seriously supposed to start munching on all that crap now? To top it all John Lewis stores have already got their Christmas decorations up and it’s not even Hallowe’en. Even the fanatical fund-raisers who festoon the outside of their homes with garish displays of lights have the good grace to wait until after Bonfire Night before they start to torture their neighbours with strobe lighting for weeks on end.
The store is famous for its television advertising campaign which many feel signals the start of the festive season, but the retail giant is well known for pulling out all the stops when it comes to decorating its stores. The Bristol John Lewis store opened its ‘shop within a shop’ selling Christmas trees, lights and decorations before the end of September. Andy Burman, section manager of visual merchandising said: “When people ask why we put them out so early it’s really because we want to heighten the anticipation of the festive season around the shop and to add to the excitement”. Kerrching more like!
Kevan Blackadder is a media consultant who runs Blackadder Media Limited. Kevan was previously editor of the Gloucestershire Echo and assistant editor of the Bristol Post. A Cumbrian who moved to the South West “for a couple of years” in the 1980s, he can’t quite believe he’s been there ever since.