THE countdown to Christmas officially starts in Ellesmere Port next week when the festive lights are switched on.
The activities start in Civic Square at 5pm on Thursday, November 23, with entertainment provided by Action Transport Theatre.
The Christmas tree lights will be switched on by the mayor of Ellesmere Port, Councillor Nicole Meardon at 6pm.
The festivities include a lantern parade through the Port Arcades shopping centre and Civic Square with local children.
Cllr Meardon said: “I’d like to invite everyone to join us at Civic Square to help switch on the lights. I’d like to thank the Meadow Park Primary who decorated the special star for the Christmas tree and the Round Table who have invited Father Christmas and his sleigh to join us.”
To take part in the parade, there are free lantern making workshops at Hope Farm library on Saturday, November 18, between 10am and 12.30pm, and a second workshop from 1pm until 3.30pm. Places can be booked on: 0151 337 6484, suitable for eight years and older, parental supervision is required.
Father Christmas will return in December when he visits Ellesmere Port Market on the December 16 and 23. Ellesmere Port Concert Brass will be playing at the market on December 23, between 12 and 2pm. There will be two £50 Ellesmere Port Market vouchers to be won in their 12 days of Christmas competition. The market is open Monday to Sunday and closed on Wednesday except for Christmas openings on December 13 and 20.
The Port Arcades have a packed events programme from November 18 until Christmas Eve, starting with a Gingerbread walkabout on Saturday and the Dee Sign Choir on Sunday. Other visitors include; Neston Strummers, the Creepy Crawly show, Granny Turismo, Topiary trees and a Christmas Elf.
Ellesmere Port will also be the home for Dick Whittington, the Christmas pantomime runs from December 16 to 20 at the Civic Hall.