Leicester set to sparkle with Christmas light switch-on tonight

The countdown to Christmas begins this week with the switch-on of Leicester’s glittering Christmas lights.

The event begins at 5pm tonight (Thursday 22 November). A packed programme of live entertainment will get underway on the Humberstone Gate stage, with sing-along songs, foot-tapping tunes and a special visit from Santa.

Then ITV News Central presenter Matt Teale will start the build-up to the big countdown.

The Lord Mayor of Leicester, Cllr Ross Grant, will also join Matt on stage. As the Lord Mayor flicks the switch at 6.20pm and the city lights up, a flurry of snow will gently fall over the crowds on Humberstone Gate.


Leicester’s Clock Tower Christmas tree – freshly dusted with snow this morning – will be lit up with thousands of white pea lights, while the city’s shopping streets will be bathed in the glow of 16,000 festive lamps.

Matt Teale said: “I love Christmas, it’s a wonderful family time. I’m so excited to be at Leicester’s Christmas Lights Switch-On. Not only will I be in charge of that all-important countdown, but the festivities will also be broadcast live on ITV News Central. I can’t wait to get Christmas officially started in Leicester.”

The Humberstone Gate stage progamme will continue after the big switch-on, with live music from the Platforms and Nikki Pope bringing the show to an end at 8pm.

Over in Town Hall Square, visitors will be able to see a tableau scene featuring Alice in Wonderland and listen to music from the Wigston Enterprise Band and the Oh Happy Days children’s choir. Leicester’s traditional nativity scene can also be found in Town Hall Square.

Highcross will also have lots of festive entertainment from 5pm until 9pm – while Leicester’s Wheel of Light in Jubilee Square will be giving visitors a bird’s eye view of the city’s glittering Christmas lights until 10pm.