When are the Christmas lights being switched on in Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds, Felixstowe and Sudbury this year?
PUBLISHED: 16:29 10 November 2016 | UPDATED: 16:34 10 November 2016
Decorated trees and twinkling lights mean the countdown to Christmas has truly begun and towns across Suffolk are getting ready to throw the switch and get the festive season underway in style.
So if you are ready for some Christmas cheer – and a few mince pies - head to one of the switch-on events taking place across Suffolk in the coming weeks. We have put together a guide to when and where they are taking place.
Thursday, November 17
Ipswich - A showcase of Christmas activities will take place in the town centre from 5pm, then Mayor of Ipswich, Roger Fern, will push the button for the Christmas lights at around 6.45pm. The Mayor will be accompanied by actors performing in this year’s pantomime at Ipswich Regent, Sleeping Beauty and Radio presenter Wayne Bavin.
Bury St Edmunds - The event to turn on the festive lights will start at 3pm with a variety of charity stalls to browse, entertainment from local schools and West Suffolk College, fairground rides, penguins, the snow queen and her snowman, street entertainers and a face painter in Cornhill Walk. The Christmas lights will be switched on at 7pm. Free parking in all town centre car parks after 4pm.
Saturday, November 19
Lowestoft - The switch-on event features the Lowestoft Players with their Christmas Spectacular, and from 3pm a team from Beach Radio will be running a competition with the winner tasked with turning on the Christmas lights at 5pm. Parking in the town centre will be free of charge from 3pm.
Friday, November 25
Sudbury - Featuring a Christmas Market and Sudbury Choral Society inside St Peters Church from 3pm. Other attractions include a synthetic ice rink, Santa’s Grotto, a funfair and circus workshop. The lights will be switched on by the Mayor at 6.30pm.
Beccles - The cast of the town’s pantomime - Aladdin - will be flicking the switch at 6pm. But that is not all, this will be a whole evening of celebrations with mulled wine, street food and a funfair.
There will be stalls selling festive gifts and toys plus Santa will pay a visit.
Clare - There will be a parade through Clare with primary school pupils taking part before the big switch on. One lucky student will be given the job of pressing the button and lighting up Clare. St Peter and St Paul Church will also be running a Christmas fair to coincide with the switch on.
Stowmarket - A bustling market, live entertainment and events happening across the town centre from noon to 9pm. Stowmarket library will have children’s craft activities from 4.30pm to 6pm.
Saturday, November 26
Southwold - There will be a wide range of stalls offering a range of gifts along with traditional carols from choral singers – and a visit from Father Christmas himself. Switch-on at 5pm.
Felixstowe - The Official Christmas Lights Switch on and Craft Market event runs from 10am to 6pm and includes a range of gift, food and charity stalls along with Santa’s Grotto, carol singing and live entertainment throughout the afternoon. The Mayor will switch on the lights at 5pm.
Halesworth - See the town decked out for Christmas on this special evening. There will be a procession which will include The Band of the Royal British Legion (Leiston branch), pantomime characters and Father Christmas before the big switch on and afterwards there will be live music in the Market Place.
The fun starts at 4pm
Sunday, November 27
Framlingham - See the brand new lights as they are turned on for the very first time. There will also be dozens of lit Christmas trees all around town for this spectacular event.
Friday, December 2
Haverhill - There is a weekend of festive activities taking place in Haverhill starting with a Christmas world market open all day Friday, and a craft and gift fair taking place in the arts centre.
Shops will be open late, and there will be street entertainment, charity stalls and fairground rides in the main high street until 8pm. Sue Hodge, of ‘Allo, ‘Allo fame, will be switching on the lights at 6.30pm. There is also the promise of fireworks, and all the fun will return on Saturday.
Eye - Be warned, the main road will be closed in the centre of town from 4pm to allow community groups to set up craft stalls, food stalls, carnival games and performance for this Christmas time event.
There will be a hog roast, Santa’s grotto, 1940s singers and a BBQ from 5pm to 8pm. The light switch on takes place at 6pm.
Saturday, December 3
Saxmundham - The town is excited to be introducing new lights for Christmas 2016. To celebrate, there will be a best dressed Christmas tree competition and carols in the church and then a lantern procession before the switch on at 4.15pm. Mulled wine and singing will entertain crowds afterwards, while children can visit Santa.
Have we missed your town? Send us details and we will add them in. Email us today