Following a short service at St Nicholas’ Church, the Mayor of Thurrock Cllr Charlie Curtis counted down to the lights.
Earlier he had said: “I would like to say a big ‘thank you’ to everyone who worked so hard to make this event happen.
“With the financial climate being what it is, it did not look like our community was going to have any festive lights or a tree to celebrate Christmas.
“We need to thank Festival Impact Lighting, Buckle Lane; Jason and Donna Price of Chestnut Farm Garden Centre; the clergy of St Nicholas; the local council housing office; and last, but not least the South Ockendon Community Forum.
“Without their support and good will, this event could not have taken place.”
Cllr Curtis explained: “When South Ockendon Community Forum lost its lottery funding it looked like there’d be no Christmas Lights this year.
“In true Christmas spirit, Festival Lighting and Chestnut Farm saved the day putting up the lights and part-funding the tree.
“The local housing office and the forum together with the church have all added something to make this event happen.
“What a sad place it would have been this year with no lights and tree.”