Crystal Palace locals are desperately trying to raise £10,000 to bring Christmas lights back to the high street after more than eight years of darkness.

Traders and community have until the end of June to buy new lights for the area or they risk being removed from Croydon Council’s list for funding.

Community campaigner Francis Bernstein said: “It would be huge, it just lifts the whole town centre when it is all lit up.

"It always used to be lit up. We did a big campaign many years ago where we got Christmas lights so it is sad that we haven’t had them since.”

The campaign is trying to raise £9,600 to buy new lights for the 36 lampposts in the shopping district, known as ‘The Triangle’ and to stay on the council’s list for funding which covers installation and storage.

If the area is dropped from the council’s list locals would have to pay each year for the council to put the lights up.

At £300 per lamp post this means traders would face a £10,000 bill to deck out the 36 in the triangle.

Francis added: “Because of the hard work the town centre and traders did we got the last set of lights which meant we were included in the council’s district lamppost allocation, if we lose this we will have to pay the standard fee.

“Sadly our old lights are no longer compatible with the new lampposts that have been installed.

"The campaign is going well so far and the £9,000 is the minimum to get 36 lights. If we get over that we will put it towards getting cross street lights. We want to have a switch on party and Christmas tree.”

On Saturday (May 13) members of the Light up the Palace team set up a stall in Haynes Lane Market to drum up support.

Crystal Palace pub, Westow House, will be holding a quiz on Wednesday (May 17) which will raise money for the cause.

So far, more than half of the money has been raised through an online crowdfunder.

There are dozens of comments in support of the campaign, including from local councillor Patsy Cummings, who said: “Really proud to be part of this great community who work together in such a unique way. Let’s exceed the target.”

A spokesperson for Croydon Council said: “Our street-lighting contractors, Milestone, install most Christmas lights across the borough at no extra cost; however, the installation of the wrap-around LED lights in Crystal Palace is resulting in additional charges.

“Once Crystal Palace have confirmed they will purchase the approved lights, they will be allocated Milestone’s services for free installation and removal this festive season.”