Chippenham set for Christmas lights spectacular

By Gill Harris on September 09, 2018

Exciting plans have been revealed for this year’s Christmas lights switch-on in Chippenham.

The Winter Wonderland will be revealed on Saturday, November 24, and organisers Chippenham Connected, in partnership with Chippenham Town Council, promise a Christmas festival bigger than ever before seen in the town.

The event, sponsored by John Williams Heating Services, will run from 1pm to 8pm, with activities throughout the town centre.

Kathryn Crosweller, of Chippenham Connected, said: “This is such a popular event, and we know that lots of local residents miss out on the switch-on when it’s on a weekday because they’re held up at work. Moving the event to a Saturday not only makes it more accessible but also means we can include more free entertainment for the town to enjoy.”

Special events include:

  • A chance to meet Cinderella in her pumpkin carriage with a free souvenir photo from 1pm to 8pm, sponsored by Borough Parade Shopping Centre
  • Santa’s Grotto and the terrible Grinch at Emery Gate Shopping Centre, 3pm-7pm
  • Glitter and Glo Face Painting at Emery Gate Shopping Centre, 1pm-5pm
  • A free Snow Globe experience at Hathaway Retail Park with free souvenir photo, 1pm-8pm
  • Festive market and arts and craft stalls along the High Street and Market Place, 10am-8pm
  • Paper wreath making workshops inside the Neeld Hall foyer, 1pm-5pm
  • Storytelling at Waterstones at 2pm, 3pm and 4pm
  • Community carols at St Andrew’s Church, 4pm-5pm.

The main stage in the Market Place will go live from 5.30pm, with a jam-packed programme of local acts hosted this year by Ben Prater, of BBC Wiltshire.

Ben said: “I just can’t wait to get my hands on that mighty plunger and make Chippenham look even prettier than it is already. My dad’s an electrician, so hopefully when I flick the big switch the lights won’t go off in Pewsham!”

A mixture of performances will draw the crowds, leading to the classic Chippenham abseiling Santa before the Christmas light switch-on, carried out by Britain’s Got Talent star Lifford Shillingford. This will be followed by a firework display, weather permitting.

Cllr Sandie Webb, Leader of Chippenham Town Council, said: “Once the lights are twinkling we encourage visitors to start the festive season in style by indulging in some mulled wine and roast chestnuts whilst browsing the stalls. There will be some exciting competitions running for the weekend and beyond, with more details to be released soon.”

If you would like to apply to hold a stall in the market, contact info@chippenhambid.co.uk to request an application form. Space is limited so be sure to apply early.