Leicester looks forward to Christmas lights switch-on

By Maria Karatzia

The countdown has begun in Leicester to the Christmas Lights Switch-on at the Clock Tower on Sunday, November 21.

The lights will switch on at 6.30pm as part of a free entrance festival in Leicester which allows everyone to join, in contrast to last year when the event had to be cancelled due to lockdown.

The hosts during the evening will be Jimmy Carpenter and Summaya Mughal from BBC Radio Leicester.

They will be joined by Antony Costa, who is a member of the boy band Blue, and former BBC Radio Leicester presenter Martin Ballard, now working as a professional actor who will star as  Widow Twankey in De Montfort Hall’s Christmas pantomime Aladdin.

Father Christmas and the Lord Mayor will also join the Humberstone Gate festivities, along with music and entertainment from 4th Avenue and The Platforms.

The event will run from 4.30 until 10.30pm during which people will be able to enjoy street food and drinks at a Christmas Canteen in New Market Square.

There will be  a free outdoor screening in New Market Square of the film Elf from 4.30pm. Performers, including bands and street artists, will be entertaining in other parts of the city centre.

 This year Leicester City Council has spent £50, 000 to update the city’s stock of Christmas decorations.

More than 16,000 sparkling lights and a spectacular tree, with 2,000 lights and 900 baubles, will be switched on.

The Town Hall will have its usual ‘Christmas Greetings’ motif together with some colourful new LED Christmas trees, while new red and white decorations will span the street at Gallowtree Gate.

Deputy city mayor Cllr Piara Singh Clair said: “I’m delighted that our celebrations will return to Leicester’s streets this Christmas, with just a few changes to make sure that people can join in safely.”

The city council is hoping the Christmas event will be a great opportunity for youngsters to have a fantastic experience with their friends or their family.

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