Ready to sparkle with the Christmas lights switch-on

Tamworth’s festive season officially gets underway in a week’s time with another magical Christmas lights switch-on event on Sunday November 26.
The countdown to Christmas will be launched in style with a jam-packed afternoon of festive fun for the whole family in Tamworth town centre, ahead of the main event in St Editha’s Square at 5pm, when the town will sparkle in Christmas cheer.

Festivities take place throughout the day from 1pm, including fairground rides, crafts, live music, Christmas market, walk about characters, dance performances, lantern parade, face painting and personal appearances at intervals from The Gruffalo in Ankerside Shopping Centre.

Throughout November, Tamworth Borough Council’s play leader has been visiting primary schools to deliver free lantern workshops. These lanterns will be used in a parade at the lights switch-on at 4pm.

The parade will start from the Castle Activity Centre in the Castle Grounds and lead to St Editha’s Square. Children can collect a free glow-stick from the Castle Activity Centre prior to the parade, to make their lanterns glow.
Primary schools involved with the workshops are:
•    Coton Green
•    Wilnecote
•    Florendine
•    St Leonards

The workshop leader will also be at the Activity Centre on the day to provide additional lantern making workshops for the public.  Everyone is welcome and the activity is FREE.

The parade will be completed with some very festive walk about characters for the children to meet; including a giant inflatable snowman, a large gingerbread man, stilt walkers and circus performers.
The main event will be at 5pm when the honour of switching on the lights will be given to the winner of a special Bake-Off competition –Amanda Little,  accompanied by the Mayor of Tamworth, Cllr John Chesworth; not forgetting Father Christmas and The Gruffalo who will make an appearance too.

The annual Christmas lights switch-on is organised with the Tamworth Christmas Lights Festival Committee and is another favourite in the Tamworth Arts & Events calendar which attracts thousands of people, who flock to the town to enjoy the celebrations each year.

Music will again centre round the Touch FM stage in St Editha’s Square, featuring live performances from a range of acts from 2pm.

Elsewhere, members of St Francis Church will stage a live nativity under the Town Hall in Market Street and the Christmas market will return to George Street.

The market will be enchanted with Christmas cheer offering festive sounds from Tamworth Wind Band and a range of stalls selling gifts, crafts, novelties, local produce, wood fired pizza and festive food – perfect for picking up some unique and personal Christmas presents.

Also returning is the annual Christmas Tree Festival in St Editha’s Church, which invites schools, businesses, local groups and individuals to decorate a tree to be displayed in the church.  

Cllr Joy Goodall, Tamworth Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Environment & Culture, said: “The Christmas lights switch-on event is another highlight in Tamworth’s free programme of arts and events which is run in partnership with Tamworth Christmas Lights Festival Committee. This year the committee along with the Arts and Events team has organised another great programme of entertainment, including The Lantern Parade. Don’t miss out on this free activity during the day at the Activity Centre and join the parade at 4pm. It should be the perfect start to the Christmas season.”