A total of 18,000 people attended the switch-on of the Christmas lights in Hoddesdon on Saturday 24 November. A record-breaking number of people enjoyed the festivities which included a performance from X-Factor winner Sam Bailey, a Santa’s Grotto and reindeer from Paradise Wildlife Park.
The Christmas celebration, which stretched from Clock Tower Island to the southern end of Hoddesdon High Street, was presented by the Events and Promotions Committee of the Love Hoddesdon BID (Business Improvement District) team, Broxbourne Borough Council, and this year’s sponsor Nonna’s Kitchen in Hoddesdon.
A packed programme of entertainment for members of the public included local dance groups, choirs, balloon modellers, various children’s’ fairground rides and West End performers throughout the afternoon. Between the hours of 10am and 6pm, a total of 57 craft, charity and food stalls were situated throughout the high street for all visitors to enjoy. Large crowds gathered to admire costumed characters, Titan the Robot and a festive nativity scene.
Later on in the afternoon, as the lights became illuminated, the Father Christmas parade made its way through the town centre, wowing the audience along its route. Crowds gathered as the parade travelled through the High Street, meeting the Mayor of Broxbourne, Councillor Carol Crump, at the stage to switch on the Christmas lights, alongside special guest, Sam Bailey.
Chairman of the Events and Promotion’s Committee, Stephen Harris, said: “It was our best attendance ever with an estimated 18,000 people in town all throughout the day. The morning started well at 10am with families seen enjoying the fun fair attractions and browsing the many trade stalls. But the best was yet to come as the Father Christmas parade made its way along the streets to be followed by the switch-on of the lights on the Christmas tree and Clock Tower. The grand finale of the event was a ten minute firework display overhead.”
For more information on upcoming events in Hoddesdon town centre, please visit https://www.lovehoddesdon.co.uk/events.php.