Banbury Christmas Lights Switch-On & Festive Market

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Yesterday was the Banbury Christmas Lights Switch-On & Festive Market and what a day — and what a way to kick off this part of the holiday season properly.

There were performances – song, dance, panto and stilt walkers – and a proper concert in late afternoon from Ska tribute band The SKAlectrics;

There were activities for the kids – face painting, ornament making, Santa’s grotto, balloon animals, and a fun fair (with so many rides, they were at both ends of the town centre);

There were vendors offering gifts, food (cheese, booze-infused marshmallows, churros, hot chocolate, and mulled wine being just a sample), clothing;

There were two Christmas trees (anyone can have one tree, go big of go home, I say). One in the marketplace and one in front of town hall;

There were lights along the marketplace itself, along Bridge Street, Parsons Street, Church Lane and the High Street (each street has its own light design which I think makes it even better than if they were all the same);

And continuing the Banbury tradition of having someone from the community switch on the lights (as opposed to a random celebrity – using that word loosely), the special guests for the switch on itself were a selection of four ex-servicemen. I was particularly charmed by former Lieutenant Dowler who served in the Royal Tank Regiment during World War Two. When asked what it was like to serve in the Tank Regiment, he responded – well, it was better than walking.

So with this, the annual calendar of Banbury Town Events comes to a close for another year. Banbury Town Council Events can give itself a heart pat on the back for a job well done. Not only for this event – which is a multi-headed hydra of an event – but for all the work they do.

And finally, what would a town event be if modparlphotos wasn’t there to capture just a few of the moments during a very festive, fun-filled day.

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