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SLIDESHOW: Crowds gather to see Gainsborough’s Christmas lights switch on

Gainsborough started the festive season at the weekend with a packed day of family fun to celebrate this year’s Big Christmas Lights Switch On.

There was entertainment from 1pm from two stages – one in the Market Place and the other at Marshall’s Yard, all building up to the main event.

Town centre lights

Town centre lights

Lincs FM’s John Marshall did a fantastic job of building up to the big switch on – first in the town centre at 5pm and then an hour later at 6pm at Marshall’s Yard.

To complete the celebrations the town was treated to a spectacular fireworks display by the local company Rainbow Fireworks.

The new town centre lights were switched on by Coun Angela Lawrence, Chairman of West Lindsey District Council, and her Consort, Peter Morris along with Gainsborough’s mayor, Coun Matthew Boles, Gainsborough’s Citizen Of The Year, Sue Edlington and of course Santa.

The Town Council and District Council have jointly invested in new Christmas lights this year as well as contributing to the event.

The civic party then moved over to Marshall’s Yard to help competition winners Carley Warwick, aged eight, and Sophie Warwick, six-years-old, switch on the lights there and signal the start of the fireworks display.

The ever popular Titan the Robot made an appearance throughout the day and headline act The Torn, performed at Marshall’s Yard for an hour leading up to the switch on.

Traditional festive music was provided by RAF Waddington Military Wives Choir plus fantastic live performances from Grace Bower and Sarah Jane and a host of other local choirs, groups and dance troupes.

There were also street acts, fairground rides and festive markets. Free horse and carriage rides went on throughout the day, as well as free face painting in both the town centre and Marshall’s Yard, raising money for the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance.

The team at Marshall’s Yard worked in partnership with Gainsborough Town Council and West Lindsey District Council to stage Saturday’s event and visitors attended in their thousands to see the town being lit up for Christmas.

Centre Manager at Marshall’s Yard, Alison Hall, said: “We have had some lovely comments about Saturday’s event. This is always our biggest event of the year and it fantastic to be working together in partnership with the town and district councils to make it a huge celebration right across the town.

“We had some fantastic and talented local performers giving up their time to help make the day special. The fireworks were made possible through the additional funding received from the two local authorities supporting the overall event.”

Throughout the day businesses were also judged for the best Christmas window display.

The winner, All Season’s Florist in Lord Street, was presented with an award from Gainsborough’s Mayor, Coun Matthew Boles.

Coun Boles said: “It is great to be see so many businesses putting effort into their shop front for the festive season. With the investment in the lights and the efforts made to shopfronts we are looking our best ever for what we hope will be a successful Christmas period.”

West Lindsey District Council chairman, Coun Lawrence, said: “I was very impressed with the turnout and the organisation of the event was fantastic. It was a great opportunity for families to enjoy themselves and have fun.”