Britain’s widest high street will burst into colour and festive cheer again on Thursday, November 25 when the Christmas Lights are switched on.
Marlborough Christmas Lights Association has been fundraising hard to ensure the town’s festive display continues to be one of the most striking and memorable in the UK.
A day and evening of festivities will kick off when the We Love Marlborough Christmas Art Market returns to the Town Hall, by popular demand.
Around 30 local artists will be selling their work, ranging from paintings, drawings and photography to ceramics, glasswork, jewellery, gift ideas and cards from 4pm to 8pm.
Meanwhile, Santa will be returning to the town, in his eco-friendly willow grotto, which We Love Marlborough are providing for him for the second year.
Children will be able to visit Father Christmas outside Ducklings Toy Shop in Hughenden Yard from 3pm to 8pm.
At 6pm, 400 children from primary schools around Marlborough will gather at St Mary’s Church to take part in the annual Schools Choir Competition, before the children parade to the steps of the Town Hall for the switching-on of the Christmas Lights at 7pm.
The eight schools will each perform a carol of their choice before performing as a mass choir at the end. The winning choir will go on to perform at the Hope and Homes charity carol concert at Marlborough College on Saturday, December 18.
The lights will be turned on by the winners of the choir competition, aided by Marlborough Town Council’s Citizen of the Year – the identity of whom is always a closely guarded secret and is only announced on the night.
As the town is bathed in festive light there will be plenty of opportunity for visitors to do some early Christmas shopping or browsing. Many of the town’s shops will be keeping their doors open until 8pm, and several have a tradition of serving mince pies and a hot drink, while the ever-popular hog roast will be returning to the steps of the Food Gallery, at the Devizes end of High Street.