Bumper festive programme for Scarborough

Tuesday, 22 November 2022

Scarborough is counting down to the start of a bumper programme of festive activities to delight and entertain people of all ages, and support local businesses this December.

From magical stilt walkers and street theatre to an elf choir and rousing Christmas classics from local bands, the three weekends in the run up to Christmas are set to bring the very best of festive cheer to the town centre.

The Salvation Army Band will kick off the programme in style on Saturday 3 December in Westborough followed by a series of street theatre shows by the talented team from Rhubarb Theatre. Shoppers should look out for a flying Santa, elves on unicorns, three ships and turkey delights!

Meanwhile the Brunswick will host Christmas poetry workshops and a Christmas craft session run by the Coastival team.

Sunday 4 December will be a must for fans of Christmas nostalgia. Cue Victorian carol singers, Victorian themed street theatre thanks to the magic of Christmas time travellers and stilt walkers with hand chimes known as the Christmas Belles.

Children and families will be well catered for in the Brunswick with creative movement and storytelling from the team at MESH Ballet. There will also be a wand-making workshop followed by a Christmas fairy and elf dance party – festive fancy dress is encouraged!

On Saturday 10 December it will be the turn of the Icicle Queens stilt walkers and eccentric ‘Let’s Grow Gardening Nannies’ to roam Westborough.

Starring on the This is the Coast stage outside Poundland throughout the afternoon will be favourite local children’s entertainer, Magic Mike, Street Signs Signing Choir and the Wellbeing Choir (supporting a charity collection by Samaritans of Scarborough). Dirty Windows band will perform Christmas songs mixed with classic pop and rock.

Head to the Brunswick to make a tomte – a mythical creature of Scandinavian folklore – or learn to play a Christmas song on the ukulele or handbells.

Next up on stage on Sunday 11 December will be Elf Choir, pop, folk and country duo Annie & King and acoustic rock band Nalgo Bay.

The team from Circus Skills York will bring their top tips for spinning plates, flowersticks and hoops to Westborough, while the brassy beats of Back Chat Brass will get shoppers dancing in the street. The group will also run a children’s music workshop in the Brunswick.

The Salvation Army Band will return to the town centre on Saturday 17 December alongside walkabout acrobats, Acro-chaps, and a hilarious Christmas themed puppet act.

The Brunswick will host storytelling, book wrapping and crafts, while families will get the chance to learn to sign a Christmas song with Street Signs Signing Choir.

The day’s stage acts will include, Simply Brass, Magic Mike, Scarborough Wellbeing Choir and jazz duo Damion Rhodes and Jemima Whyte.

The last entertainment packed day before Christmas will be Sunday 18 December.

Westborough will reverberate to the drums, rumbling tuba and horns of the contemporary New York Brass Band with its repertoire ranging from jazz to pop, reggae to funk and New Orleans Jazz to ska.

There will also be Carol Singing Christmas Crackers from the Bread and Butter Theatre Company and the Brunswick will host a wreath making workshop.

Elf Choir and Nalgo Bay will return to the stage outside Poundland, which will also host Gladstone Road School Choir and Staxton Singers.

A visit to Scarborough will not be complete without a real ice experience at the festive skating rink in North Street car park. The rink will be open daily from Friday 9 December to Tuesday 3 January, 11am to 8pm (last entry at 7pm). Booking tickets online in advance via the ice rink website is essential.

New for this year is a 14 x 14 metre tepee next to the rink, which will feature a bar and roaring fire, perfect for non-skaters to relax while other family members have fun on the ice.

There will also be stalls and attractions including gifts, German sausages, craft chocolates, gin, a children’s carousel and an organ, all decked out with Christmassy lighting.

We are grateful to the following businesses for supporting the ice rink: Everyone Active, Boyes, McDonalds, Scarborough Sixth Form College, Scarborough Tec, The Tile Company, Beyond Housing, Stephen Joseph Theatre, YMCA, Scarborough Spa and This is the Coast.

The full programme of town centre activities, which includes times and locations, is available on our Discover Yorkshire Coast website.

Councillor Jim Grieve, cabinet member for quality of life, said:

"Our teams and creative partners have pulled out all the stops this year to put on a festive programme of entertainment and activities to attract more people to Scarborough and benefit local businesses.

"From the traditional to the contemporary, with plenty of humour thrown in, I hope the varied programme gives people an extra incentive to visit the town centre to shop, feel festive and make merry with family and friends."