From a Giant White Witch to music for all ages – something for everyone at the Cheltenham Christmas Lights switch-on

Published on 20th November 2018

white witch puppet

Final details have been confirmed for a dramatic evening of entertainment at this year’s Christmas Lights switch-on in Cheltenham this year.

A giant White Witch puppet standing more than 16 feet high on a chariot will travel through the town centre in a high-impact street theatre event on Saturday November 24.

The event, being organised by Cheltenham Business Improvement District (BID), will be supported by an afternoon of festive music at Regent Arcade, an evening of party music at The Brewery Quarter and other entertainment across the town.

The White Witch, supported by six goblins, will try to stop Father Christmas, who has six elves on his side, from turning on the lights.

A parade will leave Imperial Gardens at 4.30pm and then proceed to Montpellier, back down the Promenade, along High Street to The Brewery Quarter and Cambray Place and then back through Boots Corner to Imperial Gardens for the thrilling showdown. Who will win? Will the lights across the town be turned on at 6pm?

At Regent Arcade, Love Island star Frankie Foster will turn on the shopping centre’s lights at 4.30pm. This will come after music from, among others, the Salvation Army Band, starting at 3.45pm.

Over at The Brewery Quarter, there will be music from the likes of Just Shut Up and Dance, The Greatest of Shows and Tux Fizz. The lights will be turned on at the Brewery Quarter at 6.30pm.

The BID has worked with Cheltenham-based company, Evenlode Productions, the company behind the highly-praised Remembrance Sunday projection show at the Municipal Offices, to create the Giant White Witch parade.

BID Director Kevan Blackadder said: “We’re looking forward to a parade with a difference this year and have also been delighted to work closely with businesses across the town.

“There will be something for all the family – and for people of all ages.”

The parade is based around the story of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe in which the White Witch tries to stop Santa from having Christmas.

The BID and Cheltenham Borough Council have also invested in more lights this year, which will see illuminations in four extra streets in the town.

The Christmas Lights were significantly improved last year, with new present motifs along High Street, new lights in the trees along The Promenade and extra features at Montpellier Roundabout and in Montpellier Street.          

Steve Jordan, leader of Cheltenham Borough Council said, “We are pleased to be working in collaboration with the BID again this year for the delivery of Cheltenham’s Christmas illuminations.  We are looking forward to a great switch on event, with even more lights and entertainment.’’

This year, there will be new lights in The Strand, Cambray Place, Regent Street and Pittville Street, along with new illuminations crossing Clarence Parade and Boots Corner.

The switch-on will happen two days after the popular Christmas Market opens on The Promenade on Thursday November 22. The market will run until Saturday December 15, with Cotswold Markets then staging its Arts & Crafts Market from Tuesday December 18 until Monday December 24.

Marketing Cheltenham is supporting the town’s festive activity with an “Experience the magic of Christmas in Cheltenham” campaign.

For more information and latest updates about the lights switch-on and town-centre Christmas activities see www.visitcheltenham.com


For more information, contact

BID Director Kevan Blackadder on 01242 571123; e: kevan@cheltenhambid.co.uk

And Tim Mountain, Evenlode Productions; e: tim@evenlodeproductions.com

 

Note to editors:

A BID is a business-led and business-funded body set up to improve a defined area, with the money raised being spent on a range of projects.

Cheltenham BID has pledged to deliver improvements in five key areas: marketing and promotion, town centre events, parking and accessibility, business support and public realm improvements.

Cheltenham BID, First Floor, Isbourne House, 3 Wolseley Terrace, Oriel Road, Cheltenham GL50 1TH. www.cheltenhambid.co.uk