It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in Chester city centre just days before this Thursday’s (November 16) festive parade and lights switch-on.

Contractors are working harder than Santa’s elves to get Chester Christmas Market ready for the big day with many of the chalets now in place.

The 12 Days of Christmas lights switch-on parade will gather in Princess Street from 7pm on Thursday (November 16) when Father Christmas and the elves take to the streets.

Starring a range of community groups and local artists, the parade will head past the town hall towards St Werburgh Street, Chester Cathedral , down to Eastgate Street, Bridge Street and around the city centre.

Christmas events in Chester

A brass band will lead the parade, performing a selection of Christmas classics, while Chester’s Christmas elves ChELFie and ELFie will be spreading festive cheer and helping children spot Santa’s sleigh, which will be hiding on rooftops throughout the event.

The elves will be posing for selfies throughout the parade, with a competition running across the festive period with prizes for the best selfie. Visitors just need to tweet the CH1ChesterBID twitter account @CH1Chester to be in with a chance of winning.

Chester also welcomes back the festive ‘CheSTAR’, a giant sparkling Christmas star, which made its debut in the city centre last year. The 25ft star will stand majestically in the grounds of Chester Cathedral on St Werburgh Street and is made up of almost 19,000 twinkling lights.

Chalets are being erected for Chester Christmas Market which opens on Thursday, November 16.

Chester’s Christmas Market will open from 11am at Town Hall Square on Thursday, November 16 until December 20. The market will be open from 10am to 6pm from Sunday to Wednesday, with late night shopping on Thursdays until 8pm and until 7pm on Friday and Saturday.

The festivities are organised by Chester’s Business Improvement District, CH1ChesterBID, in partnership with Cheshire West and Chester Council .

For more information about all the events and activities taking place this Christmas, visit or follow @CH1Chester on Twitter .