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Our guide to the Cambridge Christmas lights switch-on events




Cambridge’s big Christmas lights switch-on event is to take place in the market square on Sunday November 17.

The Big Switch On: The Cambridge city centre Christmas lights are switched on for 2018. Picture: Richard Marsham
The Big Switch On: The Cambridge city centre Christmas lights are switched on for 2018. Picture: Richard Marsham

Organised by Cambridge BID and supported again this year by the Cambridge Independent, thousands of people are expected to attend the festivities.

Kicking off the Christmas season this year, Star Radio will take control of the stage from midday, where there will be entertainment from schools, performing arts clubs, choirs and more.

As a special treat this year, The Rock Choir will be performing at 4.30pm.

This year, Star Radio and Cambridge BID have been searching for a star to turn on the Christmas lights.

Running a competition on air and online, people were asked to nominate their local hero to flick the switch.

The competition was tough, but a winner has been selected by the panel of judges to do the honours.

Read all about Sam Isaacson in our interview.

Meanwhile, there will be further festivities in the Grand Arcade shopping centre.

The schedule

The Christmas lights entertainment in the market square will include:

  • 12pm: Netherhall School musical theatre
  • 12.25pm: On Stage Performing Arts
  • 12.50pm: Pauline Quirk Academy
  • 1.15pm: Stagecoach Performing Arts
  • 1.40pm: Icknield Primary School choir
  • 2.25pm: Milton C of E Primary School choir
  • 2.50pm: Razzamatazz Theatre School
  • 3.15pm: Splitz Theatre Arts
  • 3.40pm: Vocal Remix
  • 4pm: Ballet Central
  • 4.10pm: Cambridge Rock Choir – sing along
  • 4.50pm: Mayor of Cambridge and Star Radio competition winner
  • 5pm: The Big Switch On.

Nearby, at the Grand Arcade, film and TV actor Warwick Davis will be switching on the lights at 4pm, with BBC Radio Cambridgeshire’s Jeremy Sallis in support. Warwick will also be signing some autographs after the switch-on.

Warwick Davis and his wife Samantha were guests at the new Nacro education centre in Spalding. (21825505)
Warwick Davis and his wife Samantha were guests at the new Nacro education centre in Spalding. (21825505)

The full schedule for the Grand Arcade is:

  • 12-12.05pm: Jeremy Sallis introduction
  • 12.05-12.30pm: Vocal Remix Choir
  • 12.40-1pm: Cambridge School of Visual and Performing Arts
  • 1.10-13.16pm: Bodywork Company performing This is the Greatest Show from the hit film The Greatest Showman
  • 1.20-1.24pm: Bodywork Company - The Urban Choir
  • 1.30-1.40pm: Safira Pinder singing Do They Know It’s Christmas and a second song
  • 1.50-2.30pm: St Mary’s School
  • 2.40-3.10pm: Hairspray - Cambridge Theatre Company
  • 3.20-3.50pm: Cambridge Rock Choir
  • 3.50pm: Build up to Big Light Switch-On with Warwick Davis
  • 4pm: Light Switch-On countdown (Warwick will press the red button after the countdown)
  • 4.05-4.30pm: Warwick Davis autograph session
  • 4.05-4.15pm: Abigail Dhese-Biggs and Guitarist Mark Ellis

CB1 lights switch-on

This year, a separate event took place on Thursday, November 14, to switch on the Christmas tree lights at Cambridge Railway Station.

Star Radio breakfast presenter Josh Lovatt switched on the tree lights, officially kicking off Christmas in the CB1 area.

Josh brought decks and party tunes to the proceedings.

There were food stalls close by and the lights were switched on at 6pm.

Read more

Meet the Christmas star who will switch on Cambridge’s festive lights

TV and film star Warwick Davis to switch on Grand Arcade's Christmas lights




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