Christmas lights in London: The complete guide

Every year since 1959 Londoners have enjoyed the time-honoured ceremony of celebrities and well-known icons turning on the major Christmas light displays across the capital. The festive lights stay lit for around a month and can be enjoyed until the Twelfth Night (5th January) when they all get switched off to signify the end of the festive period. 

 So far this year we’ve seen the Olympic-themed Oxford Street display turned on by Robbie Williams, and 40 Olympic and Paralympic athletes did the honours on Regents Street. Both lights displays are sponsored by Marmite.

Only a fortnight ago, Taylor Swift turned on the Westfield Christmas lights to 10,000 fans. Knightsbridge’s most famous department shop, Harrods, chose to switch on their 11,000 lights accompanied by an outstanding Disney-themed fireworks display. 

19th November saw pop princess Rihanna returning to sing at Westfield, Stratford City, to celebrate another hugely successful year for the East London shopping centre as part of their ‘lights on’ ceremony. The Sun reported that her fee was somewhere in the region of £5 million.

 The sound of Christmas carols will ring loud as Trafalgar Square’s Christmas tree goes up this year. It has been an annual treat since 1947. This year the tree will be lit up using energy efficient bulbs on Thursday December 6th, accompanied by various dignitaries. The tradition began when the people of Oslo first donated a tree as thanks for Britain’s assistance to the Norwegian defence during World War II. During the war London provided a safe haven for Norwegian refugees from a Nazi siege, so every year when the tree is felled a ceremony also takes place before it’s shipped across the North Sea.

 A more recent, but nonetheless charming, addition to the list of Christmas lights shows is Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland, an annual Christmas funfair that started in 2006. Families can enjoy free entry to a Christmas Market with a Victorian bandstand and over 100,000 lights, alongside ticketed rides, attractions, circuses and an ice rink. This year to top it all off, 200 tonnes of ice and snow have been sculpted into ‘The Magical Ice Kingdom sculpture’ garden experience. But with so much on offer, simply walking through central London at night time is bound to provide a festive, sparkling treat for all the family.

1 comment:

  1. Ganda don no? kung can afford lang ako, punta ko dyan:)