Thousands are expected to flock to Congleton on Friday 22 November to see the annual Christmas Lights Switch-on. With the High Street closed to traffic the area will be transformed into a Christmas wonderland from 4pm – 7pm, with the big lights switch on at 5.30pm
People attending the switch on can enjoy children’s fair rides, a quality craft and gift fayre in theTown Hall, local organisations fayre in the pedestrian area, hot food, entertainment from the main stage by the Christmas Tree and music at the Swan Bank end of the pedestrian area and a 3-4 minute firework display at 5.30pm.
The event is organised by a ‘Christmas Crackers’ group led by Congleton Town Council and Congleton Community Projects. Following comments from last year the group has decided to hold the lantern procession as part of the Ice Rink Opening on the 13 December rather than as part of the switch-on celebrations.
Jackie MacArthur from Congleton Town Council explained: “The lights switch-on has become incredibly popular and the crowds can get really big, especially around the stage. This year as we have the opening of the Ice Rink on the 13 December we decided to hold the parade then and concentrate on the stalls, entertainment, craft fayre and rides on the night of the switch-on.”
Entertainment on the main stage will start at 4pm with music from Beartown Radio. Marlfields School Choir will sing near Argos from 4- 4.30pm. The programme is then:
4.20 Spotlight Glee – singing and dancing
4.40 Congleton’s one day only Primary Schools Talented Christmas Choir
5.05 Festive Fun with Beartown Radio and where is Santa
5.30 Lights on and Fireworks
5.40 Salt City Jazz meets Beartown Stompers
6.00 Congleton’s very own ‘Can’t Sing Choir’ with Jack Tavener
6.25 See you on the 24th Santa!
6.30 Congleton Youth Theatre – songs from Joseph
6.45 Joanne Bayley School of Dance
The High Street will be closed from the bottom of Moody Street to the bottom of Canal Street from 2.30pm until 8.30pm. There will be three road blocks – one at the bottom of Moody Street, one preventing cars turning left at the bottom of Canal Street and one preventing vehicles coming onto the High Street from Market Street and the bus station.
Town Mayor, Cllr George Hayes said: “Switching on the Christmas Lights is always a great night in Congleton and one not to be missed! Congleton Town Council and Congleton Community Projects have worked hard to put on a good show and I hope that once again people will turn out in their thousands to be part of the great community atmosphere that we have in Congleton.”
Groups taking part in this year’s Community Fayre in the pedestrian area are: Citizens Advice Bureau, Congleton Museum, Visyon, Air Training Corps, St John Ambulance, Congleton First Responders, Congleton Scouts, Uganda Learn for Life, Jenni Lee Foundation, Age UK, Fairtrade, Macmillian, Churches Together, Congleton Lions,. Friends for Leisure, Congleton Sustainability Group, Red Cross, Cats Protection League, East Cheshire Hospice, RSPB, Bromley Farm, Congleton Disabled Club, Youth in Action, Baptist Church, The Christie Hospital, 7-Up Youth, Bosley School PTA.
Many shops in town will be joining in the festive fun and staying open until 7pm – some putting on special offers.
For more details about the Light Switch-on see www.congleton-tc.gov.uk or phone the Town Council on 01260 270350. For info or to book a lantern workshop call 01260 291156