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Friday, 28 November 2014

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Kitty to flick the switch on first of the festive lights

COPELAND will be filled with festive cheer in coming weekends when its towns are lit up for Christmas.

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festive fun: Kitty Brucknell

Whitehaven hosts its big switch-on event this Sunday – featuring X-Factor star Kitty Brucknell – followed by events in Egremont, Frizington and Millom the following weekend.

Whitehaven’s event will take place at about 5.30pm, with Kitty joined by Geoff Garrity, the mayor of Copeland, for the switch-on.

On Saturday night, Kitty will headline a night of entertainment at Whitehaven Golf Club. In support of Sunday’s event, Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners have offered free parking for the day at its car parks.

Organisers hope locals will turn out to welcome Kitty and a host of other home-grown talent to the CFM Stage on Lowther Street. And as in previous years, the section of Lowther Street from St Nicholas’ Gardens to Strand Street will be closed off to traffic from about 9am on Sunday to accommodate the crowds; there will be no vehicle access on to Lowther Street from Queen Street, Church Street and Chapel Street. Taylor’s fun fair will be on the street with some children’s attractions.

The Harbour Commissioners’ car parks are at the multi-storey on Swingpump Lane, Quay Street (next to Argos), Queens Dock (opposite Tesco), and Wellington Inn (past The Beacon).

Egremont will be filled with festive cheer next weekend when it holds its £35,000 Christmas lights switch-on.

Held on Sunday, December 1, it features fireworks, Santa, reindeers, carols and a wishing tree all along the town’s Main Street from 1pm onwards.

Starting with the dedication of Egremont’s crib, it will see the town’s band lead a procession down to the Market Place to be joined by St Bridget’s School choir.

Special guests will include the mayor and mayoress of Copeland and Pete Moss, from CFM, as well as a visit from Father Christmas on his sleigh. There will also be a lantern procession, including Minnie and Mickey Mouse.

Geraldine Pritchard, of Egremont Amenity Committee, said: “This event is our second year since re-forming last year. We believe they are fast becoming the place to be for an excellent Christmas Wonderland atmosphere and a great community event. We hope everyone makes an effort to attend.”

Entertainment will be provided by Joanne Dougan's Step by Step dancers and West Lakes Wind Band. Whitehaven Theatre Group Chorus, who will be holding their pantomime, Sleeping Beauty, in Egremont Market Hall from December 10-15, will also be singing.

The winners of the children’s best Christmas poem and best Christmas card design will be announced and invited on to the main stage to be presented with their prizes by the mayor and mayoress.

There will also be a street market with over 40 stalls, including refreshments such as a hog roast. Family fun will be provided by a caricaturist, a Santa Post Box, a children’s entertainer as well as face painting and children’s rides.

Geraldine added: “Everyone, including acts and stall holders, are asked to wear Santa hats to create a lovely Christmas atmosphere to celebrate what Egremont has to offer.”

The event was funded by organisations including NMP, Copeland Community Fund, Copeland Council and LLWR. The committee also want to thank local businesses, including Mayson Bros, as well as local schools.

Lantern workshops will be held at Florence Arts Centre, from 10am to 4pm this Sunday (November 24). For bookings telephone 01946 824946.

In Frizington, Father Christmas will be making a special guest appearance to switch on the village’s lights. The event takes place on Friday, November 29, at 6pm, and the party continues inside the White Star Football Club where there will be a Christmas market and every child will receive a gift from the man himself.

The festive season will kick off in Millom with the lights switch-on, also on November 29, from 4pm until around 7pm in Market Square.

Father Christmas will be on hand, with entertainment from the Holborn Hill Junior Brass Band.

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