The community turned out in force for Buxton’s Christmas lights switch-on event on Friday.
Hundreds of people packed into the Pavilion Gardens for the town’s winter celebration, which was organised by Buxton Sparkles.
The festivities began at 2pm with the Pavilion Gardens’ grand bazaar in the Octagon, featuring a wide variety of stalls selling Christmas gifts, crafts, decorations and seasonal food and drink. At 5pm, the event was officially opened by town crier Bill Weston MBE, and the celebrations began in earnest.
Children were able to visit Father Christmas in his grotto or take a ride on the train with the Snow Queen while adults could take in the seasonal atmosphere or browse the selection of refreshments that were available on the promenade.
Music was provided by a number of local schools including St Anne’s Primary School, Buxton Community School and Harpur Hill Primary School and Fairfield Brass Band. The mini Billerettes were also on hand to entertain the crowds.
One of the highlights of the event was the lantern parade, which this year was bigger than ever before. Created by local children and community groups and made from recycled materials, the lanterns lit up the sky as the procession made its way around the Pavilion Gardens led by High Peak Samba band.
The parade was then followed by the switch-on, which this year was performed by CBBC star Jonny Freeman, who is appearing as Buttons in Buxton Opera House’s panto.
A collection on the night was shared between High Peak Night Stop and food bank and Buxton Sparkles.
Andrea Lewis of Buxton Sparkles said: “It’s not just about the Christmas lights switch-on, it’s also about involving the community and we were delighted to see so many people turn out and great that we were able to involve more schools and community groups this year. From the comments we received it sounds everyone had a good time.
“Johnny Freeman was excellent and certainly whipped up the crowd.
“It was also the biggest turnout for the lantern parade that we have ever seen.
“If anyone wants to come and help us they are more than welcome to get in touch.”
To find out more about Buxton Sparkles, see www.buxtonsparkles.co.uk.