WITH less than 90 sleeps to go until this Christmas, thoughts are inevitably turning towards the festive season.

But for many people, the ‘season to be jolly’ just wouldn’t be the same without the smell of pine coming from a real Christmas tree.

However, Fermanagh and Omagh District Council officers have warned that, in future years, the real Christmas trees provided by the local authority during the festive period may have to be replaced by artificial ones.

Every year, the Council supplies real Christmas trees at various locations in Enniskillen and Omagh, as well as other towns and villages across the district.

But a report presented to this month’s meeting of the Regeneration and Community Committee advised Council members that the introduction of artificial trees “may need to be considered” in future years.

The report, which contained details of the Council’s festive programme for this year, blames the “increasing difficulty” in sourcing real Christmas trees for the proposal.

The author of the report added: “An assessment of potential options will be presented to a future Committee meeting.”

Meanwhile, the report also recommended that this year the Christmas lights switch-on in both Enniskillen and Omagh take place on Saturday, November 25.

Previously, the switch-on of the lights in Omagh had taken place on a Thursday evening.

The planned events will include a mix of festive musical and street entertainment, as well as lantern parades.

The report added: “Enniskillen BID Ltd has offered to pay a total of £4,000 on behalf of the Enniskillen businesses for the contribution towards the Christmas 2017 lights.”