Chatteris prides itself on still being the best as it prepares for Christmas lights switch-on

Chatteris lights switch on at the bandstand in the middle of the town
Chatteris lights switch on at the bandstand in the middle of the town
Share this article

Once again Chatteris will be vying for the top spot for Christmas lights in the area when the annual switch-on takes place on Saturday, December 2.

Organisers promise some new displays throughout the town this year with one particular set of lights at the Jubilee Gardens end of High Street costing over £2,500.

Chatteris lights switch on at the bandstand in the middle of the town

Chatteris lights switch on at the bandstand in the middle of the town

Chris Savill, who is in his 18th year of organising the lights, said: “We have spent a lot of money this year on refurbishing old displays and buying new ones. The one on High Street near Jubilee Gardens is supposed to be really special, so people might like to go and see that one.

“As usual it all takes place from 4.30pm on Market Hill, but of course the roads will be shut in the town centre from noon to allow the fair rides to get set up. We expect to have between 20 and 25 rides to suit all ages throughout the town.

“Father Christmas will be arriving on his sleigh and will be joined by a local school pupil to actually flick the switch and light up the town. The parish church will be open and will have its annual Christmas tree festival.

“We have been going since around 1985 – although no-one can say for sure that is the exact date we started with the lights – and we still rely totally on donations, unlike other towns where the lights are paid for through the parish council tax precept so there will be a bucket collection on the night. We have also sent out over 5,000 envelopes to people’s homes so I would urge people to return them. They don’t have to give a large amount, every pound counts.

Chatteris lights switch on at the bandstand in the middle of the town

Chatteris lights switch on at the bandstand in the middle of the town

“Everything is done by volunteers who have been working for the past six or seven weeks to get everything in place. This coming week we will be putting up the Christmas trees and decorating them ready for the big day.

“We like to think we still boast the best lights in the area, although I have to admit some other places like Wimblington are catching up with us fast.”

The lights will shine daily from 3pm until midnight throughout the festive period.