Lighting up garden for last time

Four year old Aiden Sharpe switches on the Christmas lights at the home of grandpapents Jon and Jennifer Sharpe at their home in Featherstone

Four year old Aiden Sharpe switches on the Christmas lights at the home of grandpapents Jon and Jennifer Sharpe at their home in Featherstone

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Featherstone grandad Jon Sharpe has been lighting up other people’s festive seasons for more than 20 years, but now he has been handed his own priceless gift.

The 73-year-old – who organises a dazzling lights display outside his Featherstone Lane home every year – set up this year’s festive show, despite being convinced he had cancer.

Medics were almost certain Mr Sharpe had a form of mesothelioma, but results of a biopsy revealed on Wednesday he has a hardening of the lung lining.

His wife Jennifer, 65, said: “It is the best Christmas present in the world. Jon does still have a lung condition but it’s not cancer which means we can all relax a little and enjoy Christmas.”

In the past five years, the couple have raised more than £13,000 for Pontefract’s Prince of Wales Hospice from the lights display.

This year will be the pair’s final lights show and Mr Sharpe, a semi-retired electrical engineer, will donate all 30,000 lights to Farmer Copley’s farm shop in Purston, which will continue to raise money for the hospice.

The couple’s festive lights were switched on by their their four-year-old grandson Aidan on Friday. Mrs Sharpe added: “The switch-on went very well. I have never seen so many people come.

“I think that because it’s our last year and what’s happened to Jon over the last few weeks more people have come to look at the lights.”

The couple hope to raise £5,000 for the Halfpenny Lane hospice this year.

The lights will be on every night from 5pm to 10pm until January 1 at 7 Dales, Featherstone Lane, North Featherstone, WF7 6AH.