Royston First BID has unveiled the 'local hero' nominated to illuminate the town's Christmas lights.

The Christmas lights switch-on will take place on Friday, November 24, and Newlings of Royston funeral manager Andy McFadyen has been selected to do the honours.

A campaign to identify Royston's local hero launched last month, with the goal of acknowledging and celebrating the unsung heroes who make the town a better place.

Royston Crow: Last year's Christmas lights switch-on in RoystonLast year's Christmas lights switch-on in Royston (Image: Royston First)

Members of the community were asked to submit their nominations to Royston First - with reasons for their choices - for the board of directors to review. Andy was then selected from more than 35 nominees.

After hearing about his starring role in the festivities, Andy said: "I was blown away to learn that I have been chosen as Royston’s local hero.

"I have worked as a funeral director for almost 16 years, serving the people of Royston through difficult times.

"It is very much a team effort at Newlings of Royston and I am always humbled by the thanks we receive from families. It is this gratitude that has driven me to give something back to the community.

"My charity work has sometimes been challenging, but always fun. I like to push myself to new heights, particularly when I took part in the wing walk challenge.

"And, on more than one occasion, I have been happy to wear a chicken outfit in Royston High Street to help a good cause and bring a smile to people’s faces."

Paul Brown, manager at Royston First BID, added: "We were deeply moved by the incredible stories and nominations that poured in for our 'local hero' campaign.

"It's a testament to the extraordinary people who call Royston home.

"Andy, manager of Newlings of Royston Funeral Directors, has served the people of Royston for more than 15 years, demonstrating unwavering dedication to the community.

"His initiatives, including Royston’s Got Talent and fundraising for Garden House Hospice, showcase his commitment to local causes.

"Amid personal challenges, he selflessly supported Royston residents during the hardships of COVID, particularly in times of bereavement.

"Andy's remarkable service, resilience, and caring nature make him truly deserving of recognition for his profound impact on Royston and its people.

"These qualities and achievements were also noted by the members of the community who voted for him."

The Christmas lights switch on event, sponsored by Dysons and hosted by Star Radio, will be held on Fish Hill from 5pm on November 24.


Live performances will take place from Limitless Academy, Royston Leisure Centre, the Somewhere 2 Sing choir and Tom Huttlestone.

Andy's big moment - the Christmas lights switch-on - will take place at 7pm.

Local businesses will play a central role in the festivities, offering an array of holiday gifts and seasonal treats.

There will also be appearances from popular children's characters and face-painting to entertain younger Royston residents.

More information about the Christmas lights switch-on, and other upcoming events, is available on Royston First's website or by following @RoystonFirst on their social media accounts.