Christmas houses: Santa lights are festive treat for Driffield's Owen
HIS NINE-YEAR-OLD son loves everything about Christmas.
So devoted dad David Akrill, 47, always does his best to make it a special time of year.
With little Owen, who has autism, ADHD and a severe stomach condition, he puts up different themed decorations at the start of every December.
This year, the display features an animated snowman, a penguin and a Santa standing around a foam ice rink outside his house in Driffield.
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"Owen loves them," Mr Akrill said.
"He helps me put them up. It takes about half a day.
"He can't wait until I put the decorations up."
Mr Akrill thinks carefully about each display before starting work.
"I think of a different theme, make a little drawing and plan out what I'm going to do," he said.
"Owen gets excited and watches me.
"I always try to put them up as early as I can."
He even gets the wiring set up early so his son only sees the fun part.
Last year, the theme was X Factor. Mr Akrill arranged his lights in a cross shape on the lawn and laid out his figures in crosses as well.
"I've done a skating rink with a polar bear and snowman this time," he said.
"We do it for the neighbours as well. A lot of them bring their kids up."
The collection keeps growing every winter.
"I went to a German trade show and got a display of two cable cars and skiers going up and down a slope," Mr Akrill said.
"I got the polar bear and penguin the year before and had an idea they would look nice around a rink.
"There's also flashing globes underneath my porch where they won't get wet."
Inside the house, pride of place has been given to an unusual European animation.
"It's a big drum linked to five little soldiers with cymbals in their hands," Mr Akrill said.
"You push a button and they all clash their cymbals and make a tune."
The collection has grown so big, he has had to sell some off.
"The loft is full of them," he said. "I get three or four more items every year. I got the penguin and an inflatable Santa for this Christmas. I just can't help myself."
Owen has given the lights his own seal of approval.
He often communicates with his parents through sign language.
There are special signs associated with Christmas and he uses them to show his excitement.
"It's a closed hand and then you open it so you can see all your five fingers," Mr Akrill said. "It's like a light coming out.
"If you put your two fingers to your chin like a beard, that means Father Christmas."
Since the festive lights came on, Owen has been using the signs almost every day.
It is his way of showing how special Christmas is.