THE BIG SWITCH ON: Thousands flock to Mansfield Market Place for Christmas lights switch-on

Mansfield Christmas lights switch on. Picture by Roger Grayson.

Mansfield Christmas lights switch on. Picture by Roger Grayson.

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It may only be mid-November, but thousands of people got into the festive spirit this afternoon as Mansfield switched on its Christmas lights.

The annual Big Switch On once again proved a hit with townsfolk as they enjoyed a day-long programme of festive treats before the town centre was lit up in style.

Stars from Mansfield Palace Theatre’s panto Sleeping Beauty were joined on stage by Miss Mansfield and Sherwood Forest, Jessica Boot, children’s TV favourite Mike the Knight and deputy mayor Roger Sutcliffe to push the button to give Mansfield its Christmas glow.

And as the town was lit up for the festive season, the skies above came alive with a spectacular firework display while ‘snow’ fell onto the thousands packed into the Market Place.

The stunning finale brought the curtain down on a day of Yuletide entertainment for shoppers - which included a parade through the town, live music and a screening of hit movie, Frozen.

Today’s Big Switch On event was organised by Mansfield District Council and the Four Seasons Centre with support from Mansfield 103.2, Mansfield BID, 6 five 2s taxis and Fresh Start Recruitment.

The town’s traditional late-night shopping begins this week, with many town centre shops staying late every Thursday evening in the run-up to Christmas.