Joe Pasquale takes centre stage in Chippenham
Christmas has well and truly arrived in Chippenham after Chippenham’s Christmas in Colour – a two day festive extravaganza in the town centre by Chippenham Connected in partnership with Chippenham Town Council, and with support from the Bristol Hippodrome, Awdry Bailey and Douglas, and Emery Gate Shopping Centre.
Friday 24th November saw the town come to life with walkabout characters bouncing, dancing, hooping and strutting around the streets of Chippenham, free arts and crafts for children, and a beautiful artisan market in Chippenham’s oldest building, the Yelde Hall. There was a stage packed with local and headline entertainment, hosted by Heart FM’s Ben and Mel, and the classic Chippenham abseiling Santa, who came down from the very top of Chippenham Museum to the delight of the crowds below.
The Mayor of Chippenham, Councillor Mary Norton said, “I was delighted to see so many people come to see Chippenham’s Christmas in Colour lights switch on event with entertainment for all the family including arts and crafts activities, which added to the festive atmosphere.”
Local acts took to the stage to entertain the buzzing crowds before the town’s Christmas lights were officially turned on by the ever-entertaining Joe Pasquale who chatted to Ben and Mel on stage before encouraging the people of Chippenham to join him in a rendition of his famous (and potentially annoying) song! The lights went on, and the sky was filled with beautiful, bright fireworks to kick off the festive season in style.
This year’s event was extended to two days with further street entertainment and the artisan market. The giant snow globe and glitter face painting, all free to the public, saw over 1,600 visits throughout the day, and Chippenham Street Pastors (Chippenham Connected’s chosen charity) were on hand to chat to the crowds throughout the day as well as collecting for the work they do in the town in the runup to Carols Around the Christmas Tree.
Kathryn Crosweller from Chippenham Connected said, “It’s wonderful to be able to offer the town an event on this scale. We want everyone to love Chippenham as much as we do, and seeing so many people come to support their local Christmas light switch-on shows that community spirit is alive and well in Chippenham.”
The event saw an increase in footfall of 11% on the previous year’s event, and feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. The Christmas season is now well underway in the town, and the Christmas in Colour event will stretch to Saturday 2nd December with the New Road Christmas Trail (more details can be found at www.chippenhamconnected.com)
Revive & Thrive’s Matthew Powell is the interim Manager of Chippenham BID.