Christmas light Switch on Parade

Christmas light Switch on Parade

The magic of Christmas is heading to Chester as the city gears itself up for another spectacular Christmas lights switch-on and festive parade in just a few weeks time.

The date for this year’s events will be Thursday November 17 at 7pm, coinciding with the start of late night Christmas shopping in the city centre.

Organised by Cheshire West and Chester Council in partnership with CH1ChesterBID, last year’s acclaimed ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ themed parade makes a welcome return. Featuring a range of community groups and local artists, the parade starts from Princess Street before heading past the Town Hall towards St Werburgh Street, Chester Cathedral and down to Eastgate Street, Bridge Street and around the city centre.

Chester Brass Band will lead the parade, performing a selection of festive favourites and Chester’s Christmas elves ChELFie and ELFie will be on-hand to help children spot Santa’s sleigh hiding on city rooftops throughout the event. The elves will also be handing out free holographic glasses that transform Chester’s Christmas lights into images of stars, elves, Santa and a Christmas surprise.

As part of the festive celebrations, a giant sparkling Christmas star known as the “CheSTAR” will be lit up for the very first time during the parade. The 25ft star will stand proudly in the grounds of Chester Cathedral on St Werburgh Street and will feature almost 19,000 twinkling lights.

Cllr Louise Gittins, cabinet member for communities and wellbeing at Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “Chester city centre is a delightful setting to celebrate Christmas and we’re really looking forward to this year’s Christmas lights switch-on event. It’s always great to see residents and visitors come together to kick start the festive season and this year promises to be another wonderful Christmas in Chester.”

Julie Charlton, Marketing Manager at CH1ChesterBID, added: “We want to make Christmas a truly memorable experience for local residents and city visitors and we’ve worked hard to make sure there really is something for everyone at this year’s Christmas light switch on event.

“The ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ parade will be a fantastic spectacle and we really hope that people of all ages come along to celebrate the start of the festive season in the city centre. With late night shopping also starting on the same night, it’s the perfect opportunity for people to start their Christmas shopping, have some fun and really get into the Christmas spirit.”

Pic caption: Thanks to Mark Carline