Christmas magic in store for town

The Priory Meadow Christmas Light Switch On always draws in the crowds
The Priory Meadow Christmas Light Switch On always draws in the crowds

With Christmas just around the corner, plans are being put in place to ensure that festive feeling comes to Hastings.

Hastings BID and Priory Meadow Shopping Centre are working collaboratively on Santa’s arrival and the Christmas Light Switch On, bringing the magic of Christmas to the town centre.

The popular ice-rinks trusty penguin helpers. Photo by Tony Coombes.

The popular ice-rinks trusty penguin helpers. Photo by Tony Coombes.

The event is taking place on Thursday, November 23, from 4pm to 7pm, to mark the start of late night Christmas shopping in Priory Meadow.

Chloe Dyas, marketing and events coordinator for Hastings BID, said: “We are very pleased to be extending the annual Christmas Light Switch On across more of the town centre. There will be live entertainment from 4pm including a circus skills workshop and an incredible fire hula hoop display in Wellington Place, as well as an appearance from Section 5 Drummers from 4:30pm at the Peer Collection, Albert Road. All the entertainment is free, and we hope to make the build up to Christmas as magical as possible for local families.”

A beautifully-illuminated procession will form up on South Terrace, featuring 1066 Pipes and Drums, Father Christmas in his reindeer-led sleigh and local community groups. The procession will lead Santa into Priory Meadow’s Queens Square for more live entertainment, the light switch on and a spectacular firework finale from Renegades Pyrotechnics.

Families can also meet the reindeer on Robertson Street after the procession.

Stacey Bell, centre manager at Priory Meadow, added: “We are excited to launch our new grotto this year, it’s the first of its kind and exclusive to Priory Meadow. The grotto will open on Friday, November 24 at 12pm. Grotto entry is £4 and includes a wrapped gift. We will be sharing all of our opening hours very soon on our website and across our social media pages so be sure to check these before planning your visit.”

On top of this, Friday, December 1, will see the popular Priory Meadow Christmas Ice Rink return.

Since 2009, Priory Meadow has created a magical Christmas atmosphere and given tens of thousands of people the opportunity to enjoy an ice-skating experience.

It has evolved over the years and since the roof has been in place, the fun continues come rain, snow or shine.

Priory Meadow is also proud of the young people who help to make the rink special by becoming a member of the ice-rink team. Although hard work, volunteering is fun and instils the importance, among other things, of reliability, honesty and customer service.

If you would like to gain work experience as a part of the skating team this year, contact Jo@ticerink.co.uk for information.

Visit www.lovehastings.com for details.