Posted: Thu 27th Oct 2016

Have Yourself A Merry Merthyr Christmas /
This article is old - Published: Thursday, Oct 27th, 2016

Merthyr Tydfil is gearing up for a fun filled season of festive food, shopping and entertainment. Preparations are already well underway for a spectacular Christmas Lights Switch On followed by several weeks of frenzied shopping and fabulous family events to get everyone into the Christmas spirit. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The official countdown to Christmas starts on 19 November when Merthyr Tydfil switches on its colourful lights. The festive family fun starts across the town centre from 11am with seasonal entertainment and music, festive characters, real reindeer, a funfair, a craft market, community performances, animal displays, children’s activities, the pop-up Tydfil Art Gallery and, of course, the most important visitor of all, Santa. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The big switch-on takes place in Penderyn Square in front of Redhouse at approximately 5.30pm with the build-up from 4.30pm featuring Heart Radio’s Jagger and Woody, local groups Stagecoach, Streetwise and Fantasy Feet, Dowlais Male Choir and Santa. The entertainment reaches a climax with the spectacular FlameOz Fire Show featuring circus artistry and beautifully choreographed fire dancing, before the moment comes to press the plunger and light up the town. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The seasonal festivities continue on Saturdays in December at St Tydil Shopping Centre with guest appearances, live entertainment and seasonal music whilst the town’s popular Farmers Market will feature twice in the lead up to Christmas, on Fridays 2nd and 23rd December. Visitors to the market will find some 12 to 15 stalls, offering delicious food and drink from some excellent local producers as well as handmade goods from local artists and craftspeople. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

There will also be lots of indoor events for visitors to enjoy in the lead up to Christmas including exciting and varied programmes at Theatr Soar and Redhouse. December highlights at Soar include Groto Sion Corn on Saturday 3rd, Santa in Love on Friday 9th and a Christmas Party on Thursday 15th December. Redhouse features a production of Shirley Valentine on Saturday 3rd December, Explosive Light Orchestra on Saturday 10th and a Christmas Fayre on Saturday 17th December, whilst their panto production of Aladdin kicks off on Wednesday 14 December with performances through to the 24th. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

For visitors to the town centre, parking will remain at £1 all day on Saturdays in the pay and display car parks so Christmas shoppers need not rush back to their cars but rather can enjoy the extensive range of shops, cafes, pubs and restaurants across the town centre. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Leader of Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council, Brendan Toomey said, “For many families, the switch on of the town’s festive lights signals the start of the Christmas festivities. It is an ideal day to start your Christmas shopping as well as enjoy the live entertainment and tuck into some tasty seasonal food.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Les Byard, Chair of The Big Heart of Merthyr Tydfil Business Improvement District said “We very much look forward to welcoming visitors to our town centre over the festive period. Christmas is a crucial time of year for the town’s traders and there are so many reasons to shop here in the town centre. My message to everyone is to shop in Merthyr, support your local businesses and enjoy a fabulous run up to Christmas.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Merthyr’s Christmas programme is jointly organised and funded by Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council, The Big Heart of Merthyr Tydfil and St Tydfil Shopping Centre, together with other town centre partners. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

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