Belfast switches on Christmas lights

Published Saturday, 17 November 2012
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Belfast's Christmas lights have been switched on with huge crowds gathering in the city centre for an evening of festive entertainment.

Belfast switches on Christmas lights
Gavin Robinson is joined by Julian Simmons and Sonia Mac (© Presseye)

The Lord Mayor, Alderman Gavin Robinson, was joined by UTV's Julian Simmons, Barazina Youth Choir, panto stars and children's favourites, the ZingZillas, on Saturday.

Earlier, the Belfast Christmas Market opened filled with stalls of crafts and food from all over Europe.

Also on the grounds of the City Hall is the Santa's Postbox - with a personal reply promised for every child who posts a letter to Father Christmas.

The family-themed event, which marks the start of the countdown to Christmas, was ticketed for the first time.

Alderman Robinson said: "The free tickets for this Saturday's event went like hotcakes."

"The arrival of the tree marks the official countdown to Christmas and with the Belfast Christmas Market setting up on the lawn this weekend as well as the switch-on event, the festive spirit (is) well and truly in the air."

The City Hall Christmas tree is a 15 metre Norwegian spruce from Pubble Forest in Tempo, Co Fermanagh.

The Belfast Christmas Market will remain open until Thursday 20 December.

© UTV News
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9 Comments
Angela in Belfast wrote (642 days ago):
What a disappointment the switch on was. Having queued for tickets, I was never asked to show them!instead the security were letting people wander in and out of the gates freely. People putting kids on their shoulders and ruining it for everyone behind, some better organisation is in order by the council
norman.d in bangor wrote (647 days ago):
to those condeming my post read it what i said the truth people celebrate christmas but not the birth of JESUS thats what it is about and what i said is the meaning has gone out of christmas its about money now for shops and an excuse to party i give presents to children and friends but dont forget what its about
Mick in Belfast wrote (647 days ago):
I see "norman.d from Bangor" commenting on most articles on this website and not once is it positive. He either starts an arguement or fires in a negative comment. Really "norman.d" have you nothing better to do, this article is supposed to be about people getting excited about the family time that is christmas, when many people share some quality to time with ones that are close to them, yet you manage to go all negative on us again. Cheer up Scrooge! Merry Christmas to all!
Ady in Lapland ( I know,I get around a bit ). wrote (648 days ago):
@ norman d ... Have you any children ? Were you ever a child ? Have you ever experienced any remote form of happiness in your life ? Happy Christmas norman.d xoxoxo
Ray in Carrickfergus wrote (648 days ago):
@Frosty - It seems to be that after the expensive uniforms and schoolbags of the 'back to school' shopping rush, Christmas items are on the shelves even before halloween! @norman.d - The real meaning of Christmas? You mean the pagan midwinter festival? Some of us may want to enjoy Christmas, even watch the nativity fairytales for the sake of tradition but without getting too dragged in to whatever religious nonsense has dragged this country down for far too long!
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