Warning over fake Preston Christmas Markets event advertised on social media

A warning has been issued by Preston City Council about a fake Christmas Markets event which claims to be taking place in the city this weekend.

By Matthew Calderbank
Thursday, 25th November 2021, 11:17 am
Updated Thursday, 25th November 2021, 12:34 pm

Social media posts about the event - advertised as 'Santa's Enchanted Christmas Village' - have been widely shared, with the bogus event claiming to be taking place in Flag Market between November 29 and December 12.

But the festive attraction has been exposed as a fake by the city council, who said the event "is not (and never was) happening".

A Council spokesman said: "We have repeatedly seen this event shared across social media, but unfortunately it is not (and never was) happening.

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"There are plenty of great things taking place this Christmas in Preston, but this not one of them.

"Unfortunately, fake events are promoted from time to time - an easy way to check for events taking place on the Flag Market or other public land is whether they are being promoted by us, Visit Preston or Preston BID.

"For example, stuff that IS happening includes Reindeer & Friends in Winckley Square, Preston Makers Market and the Winckley Wonderland."

You can find a list of the the real Christmas events planned for Preston on the city council website here.

Posts about the event - advertised as 'Santa's Enchanted Christmas Village' - have been circling on social media.

Highlights of the city's Christmas celebrations include the following events...

Saturday, November 20

Witness the start of the 2021 festive season in Preston, with famous faces and a family-friendly party to celebrate the Christmas lights switch on.

Smooth Radio North West will officially launch the city's Christmas period with a huge free-to-attend concert before the lights are lit.

Father Christmas and the Grinch take to the stage during Saturday's Christmas Lights Switch On in Preston

The event starts at 5.30pm, but you are advised to get there early and soak up the festive cheer.

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Saturday, November 27

Head to Winckley Square Gardens between 11am and 3pm for a "magical event". Visitors will be able to meet and greet some of Father Christmas' reindeer, have their faces painted, and take advantage of photo opportunities with the iconic sleigh, as well as an interactive snow globe.

Preston Markets will also be hosting the popular Record Fair, joined by the Salvation Army Brass Band and St George the Martyr Band. Make sure to say hello to the toy soldiers, gliding their way around the markets and Orchard Street.

Saturday, December 4

The Reindeer and sleigh are back in Winckley Square Gardens between 10am and 2pm, bringing you another opportunity to see Father Christmas' Reindeer and more festive activities. Keep your eyes peeled for Christmas elves roaming about, alongside other special guests and music from the Preston Ukulele band.

Mistletoe Belles will also be making an appearance during the day around Preston Markets and Orchard Street.

Saturday, December 11

Returning to the Flag Market on Saturday, December 11 is the ever-popular Preston Makers Market, plus bands from Salvation Army and St George the Martyr performing festive and traditional tunes at Preston Markets.

Later that day, there will be a "Bratwurst & Butter Pie" late night shopping event hosted by independent businesses on Cannon Street, Winckley Street, and Guildhall Street.

The event starts at 2pm and shops will remain open until 8pm.

Sunday, December 12

You can join The Friends of Winckley Square for their Christmas Concert in the Gardens on Sunday, December 12, from 3pm to 5.30pm.

There will be mulled wine, mince pies, parched peas, and dazzling entertainment to get you geared up for Christmas.

Saturday, December 18

A Winter Wonderland is coming to Winckley Square Gardens, with merry fun, refreshments, and activities for all the family to enjoy. You can meet familiar characters, be able to take part in Christmas adventures and, of course, meet with Father Christmas himself.

And over at Preston Markets, there will be even more festive live music.

There's loads going on throughout the North West over the Christmas period and we've picked out some of the best events from around the region.

You can find our full guide to all the Christmas events taking place in Preston, as well as Blackpool, Wigan, Manchester and Liverpool here.

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