Christmas coming to town centre

AS Ipswich prepares to welcome the festive season, two lucky Evening Star competition winners are today preparing for their big moment.Tomorrow afternoon twins Luke and Callum Penning, six, will switch on the Evening Star's Christmas tree lights, alongside Tractor Boy and Pudsey Bear.

AS Ipswich prepares to welcome the festive season, two lucky Evening Star competition winners are today preparing for their big moment.

Tomorrow afternoon twins Luke and Callum Penning, six, will switch on the Evening Star's Christmas tree lights, alongside Tractor Boy and Pudsey Bear.

The boys won the honour in a competition run by the Evening Star this week.

Callum, of Bramford Lane, said: "I can't wait. I'm really looking forward to pressing the button and can't wait to see Rudolph!"


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Their mum, Amanda, said she could not believe the boys had been picked: "It's going to be such a nice thing for them to do. They are really looking forward to it. In fact, we're all really excited about it - especially their grandma!"

Large crowds are expected to gather on the town's Cornhill for the 'Ipswichristmas' event which will see mayor Penny Breakwell turn on the rest of the town's Christmas lights after the Evening Star's tree has been lit.

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A variety of events will be taking place around the town from 1pm – including a Cuban dance workshop, storytelling and a 30-voice choir.

Proceedings at the Cornhill will kick off at 2pm with performances from a number of local bands, compered by Radio Suffolk presenter Stephen Foster.

And just after the lights have been switched on, at 4.31pm, the Cornhill will see the first of the winter's snowstorms. Huge machines have been hired to cover the crowd in a light sprinkling of real snow.

Father Christmas is also expected to be finding time in his already hectic schedule to make an appearance.

Today he was due to appear at his Ipswich's Co-op store where shoppers will be able to visit him in his grotto from now until Christmas.

And as well as appearing at the Cornhill tomorrow, he is also due to be popping in to Debenhams for the official opening of his grotto there.

Tomorrow's activities at the Cornhill are part of this year's Ipswichristmas campaign which aims to promote business in the town during the festive period.

The switch-on coincides with the town's first major Sunday trading day, with most stores open from 10.30am until 4.30pm.

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