Scarborough's all new Christmas lights switch-on
Final preparations are being made for an all new, spectacular Christmas lights switch-on event in Scarborough this year, complete with a special celebrity guest appearance.
On Sunday 26 November, Yorkshire Coast Radio will host Scarborough's Christmas lights switch-on from 4pm on Foreshore Road in the town's South Bay, with the special guest turning on the lights at 5pm, followed by a spectacular fireworks display.
To add to the wow factor, seafront traders and residents are being encouraged to switch off the lights on their premises at 4.55pm to plunge Foreshore Road into darkness before the countdown to the lights switch-on begins at 4.59pm.
The closure of Foreshore Road to traffic will ensure there is plenty of space for people to gather and for crowds to be managed safely.
The event is being made possible thanks to the power of partnership between private and public sector organisations and individuals all working towards delivering the type of event the local community has demanded for a number of years. The organisations involved include Scarborough Hospitality Association, Scarborough Chamber of Trade, South Bay Traders Association, Scarborough Borough Council, North Yorkshire County Council and local theatres.
The organisers are encouraging people to come into Scarborough for the whole afternoon prior to the switch-on, get some early Christmas shopping done in the town centre, have lunch in one of the cafes, restaurants or bars and from 1pm at the Brunswick Centre get a taste of the three fabulous Christmas shows that will be on offer throughout Christmas. Characters from the Stephen Joseph Theatre's 'A (Scarborough) Christmas Carol’', Scarborough Spa's 'Jack and the Beanstalk' and the YMCA's 'Aladdin' will all be performing extracts from their shows.
Graham North, who has led the group responsible for delivering the new switch-on event said:
"We're delighted to be bringing a celebrity switch-on event back to Scarborough. We want it to be a spectacular community event so we're asking everyone to help us make this Christmas switch-on the best yet! Keep the afternoon free in your diary so you can support your town, come down in your Christmas costumes and get ready to play your part in the switch-on by having your count down voices and mobile phone torches ready."
Janet Deacon, Scarborough Borough Council Tourism Manager said:
"It's been brilliant to see so many people working together to bring this fantastic event to Scarborough. We're purposefully keeping tight lipped about who the celebrity guest is until nearer the day, so my advice is to keep an eye out for updates online and in local radio and press."
Information about the switch-on will be available via discoveryorkshirecoast.com and scarborough.gov.uk - as well as their affiliated social media channels - and a dedicated 'Scarborough Christmas 2017' community Facebook page has been created.
Plans are also being finalised for a weekend full of Christmas entertainment in the town centre on Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 December. Any choir, musical ensemble, dance school, church group, community group or similar which would like to have an opportunity to perform outside Poundland during the weekend should email firstname.lastname@example.org with details of what they would like to perform and a preferred day and time. Those taking part will be able to accept donations from members of the public.
Christmas is also high on the agenda at the newly revamped Scarborough Market Hall and Vaults. On Saturday 9 December traders will be hosting a special Christmas shopping event with entertainment throughout the day, hot chestnuts and Christmas crêpes available to purchase from traditional vendors, and raffles with proceeds going to local good causes. The star attraction in the Market Hall in the run up to Christmas will be a four and a half metre tall Christmas tree decked with around 2000 lights, while in the Market Vaults, traders are aiming for a grotto style transformation.