Hoole was once more in festival mood at the weekend as the annual Christmas lights switch-on got under way and thousands flocked to the popular suburb to enjoy the fantastic entertainment.
In a change to the usual format, the event was on a Sunday, with a Christmas street market in the afternoon, accompanied by a local music showcase event on the main stage.
Local musician Jonny Daniel was approached by the organisers Notting Hoole to deliver the event, showcasing 17 amazing acts to entertain the crowds during the afternoon. Jonny then went on to delight the crowds by performing on stage himself, along with fellow headline artists Joe Hampton and Ben Stafford.
The regular hosts of the switch on-event – Dee 106.3’s Gavin Matthews and Chester the Cat along with Flipside Radio’s Mr Parsley – then took to the stage at 4pm to welcome Santa and switch on the lights at 6pm. Cheers from the crowd of thousands and a stunning firework display marked the switch-on and the start of the Christmas countdown in Hoole.
Festival organiser Sue Mason said: “We have really been so amazed at the incredible support we have had this year. Our headline event sponsors Co-op, Costa and Belgrave Care have been fantastic, we really could not have done all this without them. They have provided enthusiastic volunteers and very generous financial support, and we have made some wonderful new friends as well.”
Local business owner and fellow event organiser Samantha Jackson from Chester Beer & Wine added: “We would like to thank everyone who has made the event possible – in particular our sponsors, the many volunteers who have given up their free time to help with the hard work before, during and after the event, our staging crew Speeches and Cream, STG Installations who have the unenviable task of making sure the lights go on and stay on, our fantastic performers including Gavin Matthews and Mr Parsley, and of course Santa, who has taken time out of his very busy schedule to spend time with all the Hoole children.
“The saying goes ‘it takes a village’, and this community has really come together this year to make a fantastic community event the best ever.”