Manx Telecom is to sponsor this year’s switching on of the Christmas lights in Douglas.
Organised by Douglas Borough Council the event, which traditionally signals the ‘official’ start of Christmas, will take place on Thursday November 22, compèred by a team from the Council’s media partner 3FM, with Douglas Town Band opening the proceedings at 6.15pm with seasonal music.
Santa’s grotto will be in the gardens adjoining the Town Hall but, in a change to previous years, the stage will be in John Street, where live acts, including local actor and musician Jack Divers, will be performing and all the live on-stage entertainment will be streamed onto screens in Ridgeway Street close to the junction with Lord Street and another outside HSBC House.
His Worship the Mayor Councillor Jonathan Joughin JP will then join the proceedings accompanied by Deacon Graham Priest who will offer prayers. Then, at 7.00pm, His Worship will switch on the Christmas lights, ‘snow’ will fall, Thursday late-night shopping begins…and Christmas comes to the capital.
Entry to the event, which is free, will be via Prospect Hill and Victoria Street, with a disabled viewing area provided directly in front of the stage.
Regeneration and Community Committee Chair Councillor Stephen Pitts said: ‘We are pleased to welcome Manx Telecom as sponsors for the Christmas lights ceremony. To be partnering with such a respected supporter of community initiatives as Manx Telecom is testimony to the Council’s commitment to deliver high quality community events and, together, we look forward to delivering a truly great evening’s entertainment.’
Callum Shepherd, Head of Retail at Manx Telecom, said: ‘Douglas Borough Council is well known for staging exceptionally well organised crowd-pleasing events in the town. The Christmas lights ceremony is a perfect example of this and complements Manx Telecom’s commitment to put the community very much at the heart of all that we do. We’re therefore pleased to be sponsoring what we are confident will be a spectacular start to Christmas in the capital.’
Before, during and after the event road closures will be in force as follows:
From 7pm on Wednesday November 21 to 12noon on Friday November 23:
• John Street between its junction with Ridgeway Street and a point opposite the east side of the entrance to the vehicle entrance to HSBC House;
From 4 to 11pm on Thursday November 22:
• Ridgeway Street from King Street to Prospect Hill/Victoria Street;
• King Street from Ridgeway Street to Thomas Street;
• Ridgeway Street Lane (Fancy Street) from Lord Street to King Street;
• Thomas Street between Victoria Street and King Street.
From 11.00am to 11.00pm on Thursday November 22:
• East-bound carriageway of King Street from Ridgeway Street to Thomas Street.
From 5.45 until 11pm on Thursday November 22:
• Prospect Hill from Athol Street to Ridgeway Street
• Victoria Street from Prospect Hill to Thomas Street;
In addition, the following parking and loading suspensions will be in operation:
From 12noon until 11pm on Thursday November 22:
• Suspension of on-street parking in Ridgeway Street between Lord Street and Prospect Hill;
• Suspension of parking in Victoria Street between Lord Street and King Street;
• Suspension of on-street parking in Hope Street, south side, between Drinkwater Street and St. George’s Street;
• Suspension of parking on Barrack Street;
• Suspension of loading bay in Lower Church Street.
There will be free parking in Douglas Borough Council’s Shaw’s Brow and Bottleneck car parks from 5 to 10pm on pre-Christmas Thursdays from November 22 and all day Saturday and Sunday until December 23. Additionally, Chester Street car park offers ‘free after three’ parking Monday to Friday and a flat rate of £2 for all-day Saturday parking.
This event is always well attended and for safety reasons the Council may have to restrict numbers.
For more details, contact Douglas Town Hall, 696300.