THIS year's Christmas Lights Switch-on in Kendal will see the event team up with the town’s famous Mountain Festival and Dark Skies Cumbria for a joint celebration of light and dark.

Dubbed the Mountain and Sky Christmas Lights Event, residents are invited to the Mountain Festival Basecamp, at Abbott Hall Park, for welcome films from 5pm on November 17.

A colourful family parade, led by a band and stilt-walkers, will leave the festival's basecamp soon after, winding its way along Waterside and up into Market Place. 

Father Christmas and his sleigh will be in attendance as will Amabile Choir singing beautiful carols before the Mayor of Kendal turns on the lights when the parade arrives in Market Place. 

But this year, in another new twist, the Market Place lights will also be momentarily dimmed as the Cumbria Dark Skies team will demonstrate the importance of creating dark skies for the wellbeing of all.

The Westmorland Gazette: The 2022 programme revealedThe 2022 programme revealed (Image: Kendal Town Council)

To continue the Mountain Festival connection, Andrei Burton will perform his famous Mountain Bike tricks in the Market Place at around 6.20pm.

Also in the Market Place there'll be mulled wine, music and a classic fairground ride to add to the Christmas magic, which will be open to all from 5.30pm. 

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Councillor Helen Ladhams, who chairs the Town Council's Christmas Lights and Festivals committee, said: "We've had a long-held ambition to team up with the Mountain Festival and it's great to work together on the event this year. 

"Last year's switch-on was cancelled when the Market Place Christmas tree was damaged by Storm Arwen, and the year before we were in the middle of a Covid lockdown so it feels like the right time to create something fresh and different for the town."