Get set for some fun at Market Harborough’s Christmas lights switch-on celebrations

Published Friday 3 November 2023

Market Harborough is getting ready for a bigger and better Christmas lights switch-on for 2023.

This year, the annual event organised by Harborough District Council is happening on Saturday 18 November in The Square from 5pm, with the switch-on of the lights by the council’s Chairman Cllr Barbara Johnson taking place at 7pm.  

The Christmas tree, which will be lit up on the night, is once again being kindly provided by Market Harborough Building Society and finished with baubles decorated by local primary school children providing a feature for visitors to admire during all hours of the day. 

There will also be festive illuminations lighting up Market Harborough on Church Street, the indoor market and on The Symington Building in Adam and Eve Street. 

The event will be filled with entertainment and special guests including the Magic Voices Choir singing Christmas favourites and De Montfort Hall’s pantomime Dame Jack Ballard from their performance of Jack and the Beanstalk. And throughout the evening stilt walkers, fire breathers, jugglers and giant bubble makers will be amongst the crowd to keep everyone entertained. 

Santa Clause is also hoping to fit time in his busy schedule to say hello with his sleigh and Scout helpers, along with Harborough FM who will be providing music and compering the evening. 

The best dressed shop window competition will be launched and the much-loved Christmas Food and Drink Fair will be running in The Square all day from 10am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday 17, 18, 19 November with mulled wine, hot chestnuts and many more winter warmers to enjoy plus additional gift stalls. Harborough Market will be open for the evening along with selected shops to really get your Christmas shopping off to a flying start. 

Please note that to ensure safety for everyone attending the switch-on of the lights, some roads will be closed from 4pm until 7pm. They are the bridge on Northampton Road, St Mary’s Road at the junction of Adam and Eve Street and at the junction of High Street and Coventry Road. 

Cllr Phil Knowles, Leader of Harborough District Council, said: “This family-friendly occasion helps generate a wonderful atmosphere in Market Harborough. We have moved the event to a Saturday to boost footfall and spending for shops, restaurants, cafes, pubs and other businesses in the town. Christmas is a time for the community to come together so please join us for this celebration.” 

Cllr Barbara Johnson, Chairman of Harborough District Council, said: “I am delighted to have the opportunity as Chairman to switch on the Christmas lights this year. So many people from the town have been involved in the preparations, and we hope that residents and visitors alike enjoy the lights, entertainment, food and Christmas shopping. I very much look forward to the Christmas spirit arriving early in Market Harborough, and I sincerely hope everyone has a great time."