STROUD went truly wild to herald the start of the festive season with a celebration of nature, beasts and people.

This year’s annual goodwill evening was held last night (Friday), with a theme of WILD; nature, beasts, people.

One of the main features of the evening was the procession, which featured an array of lanterns made in schools and at workshops.

Schools which made lanterns this year included Randwick, the Rosary, Rodborough, Christ Church at Chalford, Cranham, Sheepscombe and Park Junior in Stonehouse.

Santa, plus a giant lantern made by artist Herewood Gabriel, led the procession around town with ceilidh dancers, Stroud Red Band, Frantix the Clown and the Rinky Dink cycle powered soundsystem which is returning after a revamp.

The procession wound around the town and finished outside St Laurence Church.

Crowds gathered outside the Sub Rooms at 6pm for a special light switch-on with snow, panto special guests and Father Christmas.

Evening entertainment included live music, the Christmas Tree Festival at St Laurence Church, a fun fair, stalls, Santa's grotto, buskers and street entertainments, plus the great annual window dressing competition on this year’s theme of WILD; nature, beasts, people will feature some excellent windows from traders.