VIDEO: Thousands flock to Christchurch for Christmas lights switch-on

Bournemouth Echo: Thousands flock to Christchurch for Christmas lights switch-on Thousands flock to Christchurch for Christmas lights switch-on

THOUSANDS of people packed into Christchurch High Street on Saturday to see the town’s festive lights come alive.

Bournemouth panto stars Scott Maslen – Jack Branning in Eastenders, Bobby Crush and Chris Jarvis entertained the crowds in the town centre before the mayor of Christchurch, Cllr John Lofts, did the honours, turning on the Christmas tree lights.

Throughout the day a festive market took place in the town centre selling a variety of food, drink, and gifts including mulled wine, mince pies and other tasty festive snacks.

Father Christmas arrived in the town centre from Peeks party store at 4.30pm, with his reindeer proving popular and the youngsters eager to catch a glimpse of Santa.

See all the pictures from Christchurch Christmas lights switch-on in a gallery

Queues for youngsters to give Father Christmas their festive letters stretched from The Priory church back down through Church Street while members of the Funky Little Choir kept families entertained with some popular songs.

This year, the town’s lights were turned on around 6pm from the Mayor’s Parlour, with thousands of people cramming into the High Street for the countdown with Zoe Hanson from Heart FM.

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Mayor of Christchurch Cllr John Lofts said: “I’m very pleased to see the crowds and see how much they seem to appreciate Christchurch, where time is pleasant.

“This is a very successful event for the town. It seems more popular than ever.”

A craft market also took place in the Priory Church with the Priory’s Advent Fayre also held.

The Regent Centre was also running a Treasure Island themed hunt with children encouraged to dress up in Treasure Island costumes.

Traders also got in on the fun, staying open later, with many holding stalls outside their premises with tasty treats.

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