CHRISTMAS STARTS TODAY… Christmas lights ‘switch on’ event kicks off the festive season on Erdington High Street – today, from 4pm to 7pm

Words by Ed King / Artwork supplied by Ceol Agency, profile pic by Ed King

The festive season starts in Erdington today, with a special event celebrating the Christmas lights ‘switch on’ – running from 4pm to 7pm, with more events and performances up and down the High Street.

All the Christmas activities are free to attend and suitable for all the family, big and small kids alike are welcome.

The main stage, outside the Co-op supermarket, will be hosted by Radio WM DJ and presenter Henry Liston – with a headline musical performance from local superstar singer Liam Price, who shot to fame after his debut on The Voice Kids UK (2019).

Also performing will be The Trouverers, a musical storytelling ensemble fronted by Katrina – alongside a troupe of Indian Drummers, playing rhythmic beats with traditional South Asian instruments and costume.

Abbey Primary School Choir will be singing the traditional Christmas carol ‘In dulci jubilo’, along with the Birmingham Irish Association. Whilst classically trained international duo Soreno will be closing the main stage after the Christmas lights have been officially ‘switched on’, with their modern medley of folk, pop, and light jazz.

Further up Erdington High Street, there will also be a community choir stage outside St Barnabas Church – with Christmas carols and traditional songs performed by choirs from across Erdington, accompanied by world touring guitarist and singer Stefan Stefanov.

There will also be a free Santa’s Grotto downstairs at Central Square – running from 4pm until around 5:30pm, where up to 1000 children can visit the winter wonderland, meet Santa, and get a free selection box treat.

Santa will then be making his way down to the main stage by the Co-op supermarket, to help turn on the Christmas lights and officially start the festive season in Erdington.

Organised by The Recovery Foundation and supported by the Erdington Business Improvement District (EBID), the Santa’s Grotto at Central Square is also completely free – with children of any ages up to 14 welcome to come along.

To secure your place on the day, simply head to the Christmas lights ‘switch on’ event outside the Co-op supermarket, from 4pm, where you can a pick up a free ticket for Santa’s Grotto – one per child, allocated on a first come first served basis.

Organised by the Erdington Business Improvement District (EBID) and local partners, today’s Christmas lights ‘switch on’ event  will be surrounded by more free events for the family to enjoy on Erdington High Street – including a ‘Nutcracker Trail’ and ‘Best Dressed Window’ competition.

The month long programme of free festive fun, starting just over four weeks before Christmas Day, will bring some welcomed Christmas cheer to Erdington – after years of Covid restrictions and amidst the current cost of living crisis.

Supporting local businesses, the EBID also hope the free Christmas events will also encourage people to search for those special seasonal gifts on Erdington High Street.

Town Centre Manager John Hodgkiss told Erdington Local:

“This winter the Erdington Business Improvement District (EBID) wanted to bring some Christmas cheer firmly back to Erdington, with an exciting programme of family friendly fun that won’t cost you a penny.

“Join us for the official Christmas lights ‘switch on’ celebration and free Santa’s Grotto on Thursday 24 November, and check out the other fun events happening up and down the High Street.

“It’s been a tough couple of years, and this winter will be a difficult time for many of us.

“But EBID and our local partners have organised these free and fun events so Erdington can celebrate Christmas as a community again. We hope to see you all on the High Street.”

For more on the Erdington Business Improvement District and all the Christmas events coming to the High Street visit www.facebook.com/erdingtonBID

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