Christmas is officially coming to Warwick tonight with the official Christmas lights switch-on and Victorian Evening.
This year the festivities will be starting early with a Victorian market in and around Market Place from 12pm.
Then the era-themed rides start from 3pm with the main event starting at 5pm. The lights will be switched on at 7pm.
As well as fairground rides, amusements and street entertainers there’s an opportunity to meet reindeer at the Lord Leycester Hospital.
The Christmas Tree Festival will also be starting in St Mary’s Church.
A reception will be held at the historic Lord Leycester Hospital before a procession makes its way to the square where the Mayor of Warwick, Cllr Richard Edgington, will turn on the lights.
Visitors are also encouraged to get into the nineteenth century spirit with the annual competition for the best dressed Victorian, with the winners in both the adult and child categories being announced on stage at 7.30pm.
Prizes include a one-night stay for a family of four at Warwick Castle, tickets for Warwick Racecourse, a free football-themed birthday party at St Nicholas Park Leisure Centre, courtesy of Everyone Active and Enchanted Tearooms have donated an afternoon tea for two with a Mary Poppins theme.
Here's what's happening and where
~ Market Place – main event area with stage (see timings below), main galloper ride and entertainers
~ Surrounding streets – stalls, rides and entertainers
~ St Mary’s Church – Christmas Tree Display and short Carol Service
~ Lord Leycester Hospital – Reindeers in the Courtyard, Great Hall café open and large Christmas tree display
~ Market Hall Museum – Craft market, kids craft activities, outdoor café selling mince pies and mulled wine
~ Warwick Visitor Centre, Jury Street – Pop-up shop selling charity Christmas cards. Children's Christmas crafts session will also be held between 4pm and 7pm where they can join Chase Meadow Crafts to decorate a traditional wooden craft kit. Suitable for ages three to12 years, £3.50 per kit, no need to book.
~ Warwick Library Victorian Week – (Running until November 27) featuring a display of pictures of Victorian Warwick from the Warwickshire Local Studies Collection, drop-in family Victorian crafts as well as local history and Victorian themed books. All free - just drop in. (Open until 5.30pm on November 25)
~ Reindeer Trail – Activity trail for kids, download an entry form then find the 15 wooden reindeers hidden in Warwick. Hand your completed form in to the Lord Leycester on Victorian Evening, for a chance to win four day tickets to Warwick Castle.
~ Warwick School of Dance (5.05pm - 5.15pm)
~ Enchanted Tearooms (5.20pm - 5.40pm)
~ Aylesford School Choir (5.50pm - 6.10pm)
~ Chris Jenner Jones (6.15pm - 6.35pm)
~ Playbox Theatre (6.40pm - 6.50pm)
~ Countdown Bagpipers to Lights with Father Christmas & Mayor (6.50-7.00pm)
~ St Mary’s Church Choir (7.10pm - 7.30pm)
~ Mayor to judge Fancy Dress Competition (7.40pm)
~ Jones Jazz Orchestra (7.50pm - 8.10pm)
~ Royal Spa Brass Band (8.25pm - 8.45pm)
~ Titine LaVoix (8.45pm - 9pm)
For more information go to: https://www.warwickdc.gov.uk/events/event/201/warwick_victorian_evening