What's happening this Christmas in Preston and where is the free parking going to be?
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The Christmas Lights Switch On event is once again funded by city centre businesses and sponsored by Gamer-X, Wacky World, Bar Pintxos, Jungle World, Friargate – Keep it Local, and Lancashire Team, with venue support from Preston City Council.
Special guests including Max & Harvey, Odyssey, Antony Cotton, Liv Cook, Shrek, The Snowman and a host of brilliant local performers, will take to the stage from 5.30pm, with the finale and lights being lit just before 8.00pm.
Odyssey’s Steven Collazo said: ‘We’re really looking forward to coming to Preston and performing for a huge audience at this brilliant event. I have no doubt that it’s going to be a great gig, and a marvellous way to begin our send-off of 2023; Odyssey can’t wait to celebrate with you all”.
Phil Toms, Head of Marketing at Lancashire Tea, said: “There’s nothing better than a warming brew on a winter’s night and so we were thrilled to co-sponsor this year’s Christmas Switch-On in our heartland of Preston. It’s set to be a brilliant night of festive fun and a fitting celebration of Lancashire spirit.”
Where is the free parking?
Preston Business Improvement District (BID), organisers of the event, have coordinated a free parking offer for the Christmas period, which starts from the Switch On, on November 18th.
There’s free parking from 1pm on Preston City Council’s Trinity Square and Penny Street car parks, Lancashire County Council’s Arthur Street Car Park, and University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) city centre campus car parks.
Free parking is also available on selected dates in the run up to the festive period across the city centre. (see full list below).
A spokesperson for Preston BID said: “We’re grateful to city centre businesses and sponsors for funding the headline event of the festive season, and to the councils and UCLan for their offer of free parking across the period.
“This will make it even more convenient for people to enjoy what the city has to offer, and we’re hoping Preston turns out in force to help us launch Christmas in the city in true style”.
For the first time, visitors can get up close and personal with some of the Switch On performers, at the ‘Switch On Trail’.
From 2.15pm, special guests including Shrek, The Snowman & Snowdog, Santa, and ‘Corrie’s’ Antony Cotton, will be appearing at the Fishergate centre to meet visitors and have their pictures taken, before moving on to Cannon Street at 3.30pm.
Louise McGuinness, an independent business owner on Cannon Street said: “We’re delighted that the cast of Christmas’s will be visiting Cannon Street, as part of the Switch On Trail. Traders on our street work hard to pull out all the stops at Christmas and being part of this huge event for the city is a real positive for us – we hope everyone comes down and allows us to help get them in the Christmas spirit”.
Corrie star, Antony Cotton, who will appear at the ‘Switch On Trail’ and main event, said: ‘I can’t wait to see everyone for the big switch on, on the 18th. As a proud Lancastrian, I’m looking forward to welcoming in the Christmas season with everyone in Preston”!
Singers, TV stars and TikTok superstars, Max & Harvey, said: “We absolutely can’t wait to be performing in Preston this year for the Christmas light switch on, as our fans know we love the North and are so excited to be back performing live there!”