The packed line up for the annual Rochdale Town Centre Christmas Lights Switch On has been announced, with Littleborough singer and X-Factor star Danny Dearden, Britain’s Got Talent boy band 'The Mend'and Coronation Street actress Katie McGlynn all set for the show.
The event, which this year takes place on Saturday 22 November, is a firm favourite with locals, with thousands turning out.
The fun kicks off at 3.30pm, with a magical lantern parade led by Katie McGlynn and the Lightning McQueen character, star of the Pixar Film, Cars. The parade, which also stars pupils from Holy Trinity, Broadfield and Hamer primary schools and children’s TV favourite Peppa Pig, will start at the top of Yorkshire Street. From there, the parade will make its way down to The Butts for live performances on the stage between 4 and 5pm, followed by the switch on and a spectacular firework display.
Rochdale Town Centre Manager and event organiser Mark Foxley said: “This year we wanted to showcase our local pride and give the public a free event the whole family can come down and enjoy. We have a fantastic line up to kick start the festivities and special thanks to Rochdale Borough Council for their support and funding.
“We hope families will make a full day of the event and do some early Christmas shopping in the town centre beforehand and stay afterwards for a bite to eat. We have some great venues in the town centre including The Baum – voted best pub in the UK, La Mancha, Madison’s and The Flying Horse Hotel to name a few. We also have over 80 fabulous independent shops and 60 high street names.”
Boy band 'The Mend' said: “We’re really looking forward to performing in Rochdale. We have been in the studio for a while working on our album so we can’t wait to get back on stage, particularly at such a fantastic event as the Christmas Lights Switch On....so let's get Rochdale rocking!"
Rapper Kris, who lives in Middleton, said: “It’s an honour to perform so close to home and to be part of the best festive party in town!”
Other local artists set to perform on the main stage include The Carers Resource Choir, Turners Dance Studio and characters from the Cinderella Pantomime at the Middleton Arena. The Big Switch On itself, at 5pm, will be carried out by all the artists along with The Mayor of Rochdale, Cllr Carol Wardle, and players from the Rochdale Hornets Rugby League.
Councillor Richard Farnell, Leader of Rochdale Borough Council, said: “This is a fantastic free event for all the family which has always been given the thumbs up by our residents. Hot on its heels will be late night shopping, the Wheatsheaf Christmas markets and a fantastic family day featuring Santa and his reindeer on Saturday 6th December. I’d encourage everyone to come along and celebrate the festivities in style.”
The lights switch on is the first event in the Rochdale Town Centre Christmas programme, full details of which, along with late night opening hours, can be found in the programme guide available in shops or on rochdaletowncentre.co.uk/christmas
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