A Belgian mayor has been forced to apologise over his town’s phallic-shaped Christmas lights.
The new Christmas lights were recently installed in the municipality of Oudenburg, in the Belgian province of West Flanders, and several local boroughs.
The decorations were supposed to resemble candles but they decided a flame at the top of the white column was a cliché and so they put in a blue dome shape instead.
However, it was not long before residents realised the new festive decor looked more like male genitalia than anything to do with Christmas.
Mayor Anthony Dumarey was forced to apologise, saying: “Of course, it was not our intention to install Christmas lights that remind people of a penis.”
“But we do see the lighter side of the incident.”
The mayor said that the decorations did not appear quite so phallic until they were turned on.
“I only realised it myself when they were illuminated. But we have to see the humour in this,” he said.
The decorations were designed by the council's technical department as part of a long-term plan for the area that included illuminated pyramids.
“Our technical department designed them. If we had bought them, it would have cost us around three times as much. So we chose the city’s colours and put a blue tip on top because we thought a flame was cliche,” the Mayor said.
“There has been a lot of reaction, but of course we did not intentionally set out to make them this way.”
He went on to show some Christmas spirit, saying that he has to see the funny side of it “in these dark times”.
“The first time I saw them during the day, I didn’t pay any attention to them. Once they were illuminated, I noticed immediately. But I see no reason to remove or replace them,” he said.
“Let’s just say that we will have the country’s most talked-about Christmas lights this year.”
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