Lisburn gets ready to light up for the festive season

LISBURN City’s Christmas Switch-On will take place on Thursday, November 22, in Market Square.

The event will begin in and around 6.30pm, however, it is advisable to be in place at least 30 minutes prior to the event starting as Bow Street is always extremely busy.

The Mayor, Alderman William Leathem, will switch on the lights accompanied by two schoolchildren, who won a competition themed ‘What 2012 Means to Me’ which was organised through the Mayor’s Office. The winning schoolchildren are from Knockmore and Tonagh Primary Schools.

Abbie Stitt, from Tonagh Primary School provided a picture entry of what 2012 means to her. Abbie is in Primary 4. The other winner, Megan McNeill, from Knockmore Primary School. Her written entry was judged to be the best in that category. Megan is in P7. Both girls will join the Mayor on the stage to switch on the Christmas lights.

The highlight of the evening will be the Christmas Parade, which will feature large-scale art creations; stilt walkers, bespoke Christmas pieces and Santa Claus will of course arrive in splendour and speak to the boys and girls from the stage. There will be carol singing beforehand from Ballymacash Primary School and the Mayor’s Chaplain, the Reverend Dark will wish all the people at the event a very Merry Christmas.

Due to the event’s popularity there will be road closures in the City to allow the parade to leave Christ Church, where it will make its way through Bow Street and then past the stage, which is situated in front of the Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum.

The Mayor said: “I am delighted that two local schoolchildren will be joining me to switch-on the lights which will mark the beginning of the festive season for the City of Lisburn. This year the event is on Thursday, November 22, which is a change to the event’s normal Friday night. We hope that people will come out to see the parade and enjoy the evening.

“There are several schools participating in the parade and we have organised workshops to teach the children to make lanterns which they will then carry in the parade.

“All in all the Switch-On is a traditional family friendly event and always extremely popular as parents, grandparents, friends and family come to see their little ones participating in the parade which this year promises to be spectacular,” he said.