Wellingborough house puts on Christmas lights spectacle to raise money for diabetes charity

The lights display in Torrington Road.
The lights display in Torrington Road.

A family home in Wellingborough has once again been covered with thousands of lights to raise awareness and vital funds for a diabetes research charity.

Karl Beetson, 26, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes aged 17 and lives each day with constant finger pricking and injections to maintain his blood glucose levels.

Karl is one of 400,000 people in the UK, 29,000 of which are children, living with the autoimmune condition type 1 diabetes.

In type 1 diabetes the immune system attacks and destroys the cells in the pancreas, called beta cells, which produce insulin.

Karl said: “This year I am covering our family home in thousands of lights to hopefully raise thousands of pounds for JDRF UK.

“Our display at Torrington Road has grown over the past 15 years from a single set of lights on a cherry tree, into something which could rival a Disney Christmas parade, as all of the lights are programmed to flash in time with various Christmas music which is audible outside the display.

The lights display in Torrington Road.

The lights display in Torrington Road.

“It takes an exhausting sacrifice of weekends from October to December, with the occasional Friday leave from work, to successfully set up, wire and prepare the display.

“The display runs daily from 4pm to 10pm and over December only adds an additional £150 to the electricity bill.

“There are many features in the display that are designed and built by myself, making the display unique.

“Some of the features include life-like virtual Santa and toy factory holographic projections on to the house windows, singing Christmas trees on the roof, 3D printed snowflakes illuminated embedded with computer controlled colour change LEDs, and an animatronic character band which secured us a slot in the Channel 4 documentary King of Christmas Lights.

“Since my diagnosis in 2007, I have used the display to raise funds for a variety of charities and causes which changes yearly and over the last 8 years, the display has raised over £11,500 for championed causes.

“2015’s efforts are already breaking previous records and I am excited to see what the final donation figure will be.”

Celia Joseph, JDRF’s regional fundraiser for the east of England, said: “This wonderful support from the Beetson family will really help us to raise awareness of type 1 diabetes - which is a serious and often misunderstood condition - and also helps us support research.

“JDRF-funded research aims to find the cure for type 1 diabetes.

“We are delighted to be the chosen charity to benefit from this festive light and sound spectacle.”