As towns, cities and villages across the UK countdown to the 2014 Christmas lights switch-on, we take a look at some of the celebrations bringing colour and sparkle to our streets.
You know it’s officially Christmas when the festive lights are switched on. And this year’s breathtaking displays promise not to disappoint.
Millions of pounds have once again been invested in making this year’s illuminations truly spectacular, and for the crowds of people who will gather to see them switched-on there’s plenty of entertainment planned.
In true traditional fashion, London will be home to some of the most magical lighting displays seen in the world this Christmas.
Celebrities will head into the heart of the capital for the celebrations, which will see many of London’s major streets transformed into a winter wonderland.
Most of the lights will be switched on between the start and the middle of November, with some of the most amazing illuminations expected to be in Bond Street, Marylebone High Street, Oxford Street, Regent Street, Carnaby Street, and Covent Garden.
Can the world-famous lights switch-on in Oxford Street top last year’s incredible Â£1.5 million display of bright white globes? The organisers will hope so.
The highly anticipated Regent Street Christmas lights switch-on takes place on November 16, with a host of special guests, fireworks and entertainment planned from 4pm.
Elsewhere in the UK, Manchester’s Christmas Lights Switch-On Show will light up Albert Square on November 7, with special guest performances and thundering fireworks.
The people of Cheltenham will be treated to some colourful street entertainment ahead of their lights switch-on on November 22.
Aberdeen swings into action the following day with a parade of musical entertainment and decorated floats heralding the start of the festive celebrations.
At the opposite end of the UK, the Truro City of Lights parade returns to Cornwall on November 19 at 6.30pm, this year with a heroes theme.
Across the water in Plymouth and a lantern parade will mark the start of the switch-on on November 13, after an evening of entertainment is held in Bath on November 12. The following week, a blanket of twinkling lights will be switched on over Portsmouth City Centre on November 20 from 4pm.
Warwick’s celebrated Victorian Christmas Evening takes place on November 27 from 5pm, and new for this year in Bournemouth is the Christmas Lights Procession from 6-7pm on November 28. Bournemouth’s pantomime stars will be leading families through the town to help Santa light up the town centre and open the Gardens of Light.
Boy band Union J will be adding to the excitement at Bristol’s Cribbs Causeway shopping mall when they flick the switch on November 13.
And in Derby, a festive parade will be held on November 15. The following day, from 5pm, themed floats, marching bands and street entertainers will weave their way through the streets of Swansea as Santa drops in to switch on the lights.