The countdown to the switching-on of the Christmas lights in Newcastle city centre is now underway.
The centre will be festively illuminated on Tuesday 14th November.
Newcastle City Council has announced Metro Radio as its official partner for the evening and breakfast show hosts Steve and Karen will be joining Newcastle’s lord mayor and some other ‘special guests’ for the big switch-on.
Around 20,000 individual lights are set to brighten up areas of the centre including Northumberland Street, Percy Street, Grey Street, Blackett Street, Newgate Street, Nun Street, Neville Street and the Quayside.
One unusual decoration to look out for this year will be a 4-metre-tall illuminated teddy bear.
Before the lights are switched on, there will be an hour of festive fun. A crowd of around 5,000 is expected to gather around Grey’s Monument to enjoy songs, entertainment, on-stage games and general Christmas cheer. The event will be free with everybody welcome to come along.
Newcastle City Council’s cabinet member for culture and communities, Cllr Kim McGuiness, said, “Newcastle’s Christmas lights celebration is absolutely the place to be if you want to get started on the countdown to Christmas.”
“Grey’s Monument and the surrounding area promises a great family atmosphere and an excellent vantage point to see the big switch-on.”
“In Newcastle, we’re known for our ability to have a great time and each year this event shows that spirit. We hope the event will bring residents from right across the city together for the first glimpse of Christmas and possibly the first bout of Christmas shopping too.”
Metro Radio’s Breakfast Show presenter Steve Furnell said, “It’s that time of year again when Newcastle shows the world its best party moves. We’ll be having a good sing-a-long to Christmas songs and getting into the festive mood.”
His fellow presenter Karen Oxley said, “We’re really honoured to be hosting this must-see Christmas lights switch-on.”
“The people of Newcastle know how to get into the Christmas spirit. You’re under starter’s orders to find your Christmas jumpers, bring down your jingle bells and get practising your best turkey impressions.”
The fun begins at Grey’s Monument at 5.30 pm and runs until 6.30 pm. Those wishing to attend are advised to use public transport as the centre is likely to be busy with Christmas shoppers.