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Lighting Up Brentwood 2019: Thousands flock to High Street for Christmas lights switch-on

PUBLISHED: 13:40 02 December 2019

Thousands of people attended this years Lighting Up Brentwood on Saturday, November 30. Picture: Brentwood Council

Thousands of people attended this years Lighting Up Brentwood on Saturday, November 30. Picture: Brentwood Council

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The winners of a Christmas poetry competition had the honour of assisting the Mayor with turning on this year's Christmas lights in Brentwood.

The Mayor of Brentwood, councillor Keith Parker turning on the Christmas lights. Picture: Brentwood CouncilThe Mayor of Brentwood, councillor Keith Parker turning on the Christmas lights. Picture: Brentwood Council

Brentwood Borough Council hosted its annual festive event in the High Street on Saturday, November 30.

Around 15,000 people visited Lighting Up Brentwood 2019 to enjoy festive stalls, food and drink and entertainment.

The event kicked off with a Santa Parade which saw members of Razzamataz Theatre School dance their way down the High Street, followed by Father Christmas and musicians from the Britannia Pipe Band.

Father Christmas then made his way to the Grotto in the Baytree Centre where he will be located for the next month courtesy of the Rotary Club of Brentwood.

Razzamataz performers at Lighting Up Brentwood 2019. Picture: Brentwood CouncilRazzamataz performers at Lighting Up Brentwood 2019. Picture: Brentwood Council

The main event was the official Christmas lights switch on at 5pm by the Mayor of Brentwood, councillor Keith Parker and the two winners of the Christmas Card and Christmas Poetry competition, Victor Polacik-Solecki and Pippa Howlett.

The switch on was almost sabotaged by the grumpy Grinch who had been making trouble in the High Street all day.

Cllr Parker, said: "Lighting Up Brentwood is the biggest community event of the year and marks the official start to Christmas in Brentwood.

The Mayor of Brentwood, councillor Keith Parker with the Christmas Card and poetry competition winners Victor and Pippa. Picture: Brentwood CouncilThe Mayor of Brentwood, councillor Keith Parker with the Christmas Card and poetry competition winners Victor and Pippa. Picture: Brentwood Council

"I was pleased to meet and see so many residents enjoying and being part of the event.

"I must thank Victor and Pippa for joining me on stage and helping me to turn the lights on, they did a great job, even if the Grinch tried to ruin our plans!"

Entertainment on the three stages was once again hosted by Brentwood Baptist Church and featured local talent throughout the day.

There were performances to enjoy from choirs, soloists, schools and performing arts groups.

Father Christmas in the Lighting Up Brentwood parade. Picture: Brentwood CouncilFather Christmas in the Lighting Up Brentwood parade. Picture: Brentwood Council

Younger enjoyed a number of smaller rides and the annual town centre Santa Hunt competition, with businesses across the High Street, Crown Street and Ropers Yard participating.

The Santa Hunt competition is open until December 14. Forms can be collected from the Chicken and Frog bookshop, where children could meet Mrs Claus and her elves on the day.

The Mayor added: "I must also give a big thank you to our sponsors Brentwood Care Centre, Razzamataz Theatre School and the Giggling Squid, and our many other supporters, Brentwood Baptist Church, the Rotary Club of Brentwood, Brentwood Business Partnership, Vision, Chicken and Frog Bookshop, Allen Ford, St Thomas' Church, Trinity Church, Conservators of Shenfield Common, Keller Williams Estate Agents, Creatures Great and Small, Brentwood Community Transport all our volunteer stewards, Muffin Pug Rescue and the many businesses in the High Street, Crown Street and Ropers Yard who help us to make the event a success."

On Sunday, November 8 its Shenfield's turn to switch-on the Christmas lights with a festive event from 12 noon to 5pm in Hutton Road.

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