St Neots will have a public Lights Switch On event this year on Sunday 28 November, 4.00-5.00pm
November 15, 2021
The highly popular community event has not been held since 2019 before the pandemic. The organisers, St Neots Town Council had been planning the return of the full event this year, which has previously run from 12.00-6.00pm and featured market stalls, street food, live music, and entertainment all day.
However, due to concerns over rising Coronavirus cases and the new Enhanced Response Area Cambridgeshire has been designated since 1 November, the Town Council has taken the decision to scale back the event on the advice of Public Health England officials and the Huntingdonshire Event Safety Advisory Group.
The event will now only take place for a short period between 4.00-5.00pm and will feature a live stage performance from The West End at Christmas, a theatrical trio of West End actors performing popular Christmas and theatre classics, followed by the lights switch on at 5.00pm, with the live show being hosted by Black Cat Radio, St Neots Community Radio Station. The event will immediately culminate with a fireworks finale, which has been generously sponsored by Urban and Civic, the developers of the new Wintringham Park development.
In addition to the live entertainment, the funfair will still feature on the High Street and will be open from 12.00-6.00pm.
The event will unfortunately not feature the additional entertainment and Christmas market from previous years, but the Town Council is still proceeding with two Christmas Farm and Craft Markets on Saturday 11 and 18 December.
St Neots Town Council is keen to ensure the safety of all visitors and staff at the event and strongly advises all attendees wear a face covering as the town centre is expected to become very busy for the switch on. It is also advised that individuals refrain from attending if they feel unwell to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
New Christmas lights will be unveiled at the switch on this year. The Town Council is delighted to be able to see the return of cross street, festoon lighting in the high street as well as new, festive designs for the lamppost motifs and Market Square tree lights. The Council has worked with St Neots based company, the Christmas Decorators, to deliver an impressive and fresh lighting display for 2021.
Christmas wreaths will also form part of the new town centre decorations. The wreaths have been jointly sponsored by Urban and Civic and Huntingdonshire District Council, who supported the project with funding from Government’s Welcome Back Fund, set up to support the recovery of town centres to welcome shoppers back.
Cllr Stephen Ferguson, Mayor of St Neots said: “I am excited and relieved that we are able to hold the Christmas Lights event this year. After all the misery and uncertainty of the pandemic, it will be wonderful to see the whole community celebrating together. I’m very proud of the way that the whole town has weathered a difficult couple of years.”
Cllr Nicola Presland, Chair of the Town Council’s Promotion and Events Committee said: “Although we are all disappointed the event has been scaled back this year, I hope the new Christmas lights will bring a bit of festive cheer to the town.”