Switch On: This Saturday

Preston will be lit up from Saturday 23rd November, with the help of a few thousand guests and a line-up of big performances.

The city’s Christmas Lights Switch On takes place from 5.30pm-7.45pm on the Flag Market.

The stage show, presented by Preston BID & the North West’s number one commercial radio station Smooth Radio North West, will feature performances from multi-million selling soul sensation Alexander O’Neal and 90’s boyband heroes from Boyz on Block.

The event, funded by city centre businesses and corporate sponsors, will also see local performers Chloe Rose, Harvey Brittain, Ska Face and Preston’s College students take to the stage as part of the huge free show.

Preston City Council are offering complimentary parking on their Penny Street car park from 3.00pm on Switch On day – visitors are being encouraged to make their way to the city centre in plenty of time to enjoy the show and the wider city centre offer.

Characters from PJ Masks will be making individual appearances at the St George’s and Fishergate Shopping Centres in the lead up to ‘story time’ at the Switch On, as a trio!

Owlette will be appearing the Fishergate Shopping Centre from 12.30pm–1.10pm and Catboy will be appearing at St George’s from 2.00pm-2.40pm, the appearances are free to enjoy, grab your cameras!

Mark Whittle from Preston BID said: “There’s a lot of excitement building for the city’s flagship event, feedback has been great.

“Our thanks have to go to the city centre businesses who have supported the event via the BID and our great line-up of sponsors – it wouldn’t be possible without them.

“The weather’s looking good and all the preparations for a great night are complete; we look forward to seeing thousands of people enjoying the show and helping us launch Christmas in Preston.”

Guests at the event will also be able to enjoy seasonal refreshments from the food and drink chalets onsite and one lucky attendee will have the opportunity to win a £500 shopping spree in Preston – for a chance to enter, just need to pick up a free prize-draw entry card from the street team on the Flag Market!

Andrew Stringer from St George’s Shopping Centre said: “St George’s Shopping Centre are delighted to sponsor Preston’s Christmas Lights Switch On. Preston BID have worked tirelessly to pull together a fantastic event that will entertain visitors of all ages and we look forward to welcoming everyone to Preston to enjoy the show. Supporting such a fantastic event that has entertainment for the whole family is in keeping with our approach to host family events in the centre throughout the year.

“In fact, following the big switch on St George’s will be hosting festive appearances on Saturdays throughout December, which includes a Grinch character on Saturday 30th November, X Factor contestant Charlotte Lily on Saturday 14th December and Frozen fans will love performances from Anna & Elsa on Saturday 21st December.”

The Switch On, sponsored by St George’s Shopping Centre, Preston’s College, The Walker Williams Group, Walton’s Coaches and the Fishergate Shopping Centre, will kick-start the city’s Christmas calendar – which will also feature the Winckley Square Carol Concert, The Makers Market, an artisan food and drink market at the Fishergate Centre and a Christmas Market at the Harris Museum.

There’s lots of complimentary parking on offer too, courtesy of the shopping centres, UCLan and Preston City Council – click HERE for more information.

Keep up to date with the latest Switch On news by visiting the official events page HERE.


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What is Preston BID?

Who Is benefitting?

  • Stimulates wellbeing and economic growth
  • Gives competitive regional advantage
  • Develops partnership between private & public sector
  • Encourages corporate social responsibility
  • Provides sustainable investment for on-going capital projects/services
  • Creates a positive sense of place and enhanced community pride
  • Destination events in the city centre
  • Profiling of their home/city
  • Opportunity for businesses to have “a voice”
  • Increased footfall
  • Fairer to smaller businesses
  • Fair system, those that invest, benefit