Star billing for new Christmas tree as BID prepare for the festive season
VISITORS to our town centre earlier this week couldn’t have failed to see our new Christmas tree taking shape.
Standing over 20 metres tall with a six-metre base, the tree is a complete change from the traditional tree previously seen in our town centre in recent years.
The tree forms the festive centrepiece of this year’s Christmas campaign.
An open-air ice rink on one side and wooden chalets selling food and drink on the other side will transform Town Hall Gardens and create our town’s most magical Christmas festival.
Our new tree alone will have 20,000 lights.
When you add that to the number of individual Christmas lights that we’ve installed (80,000) and the individual Lord Street tree lights (400,000) it makes a grand total of 500,000.
Not bad for a town the size of Southport! It all starts with the biggest Christmas lights switch-on that we’ve ever put together.
The switch-on is now an established BID event and it’s all happening this Sunday (November 18). This year’s line-up, the best we’ve delivered so far, includes S Club, boy band 911 and Livin’ Joy.
Other acts appearing on stage include Starkidz, Astrid (from The Voice Kids 2018) and CBeebies’ Cook And Line.
All of that will be supported by digital and media advertising delivered in partnership with Marketing Southport.
We’re working in close collaboration with Sefton Council’s tourism team.
While the BID is funding the Christmas lights and tree, the open-air ice rink is a joint funding initiative between ourselves and the council.
This year’s Christmas campaign will be the last the BID will deliver in this term.
It’s our last opportunity to demonstrate the value of what we do before businesses in the town centre get to vote on whether to continue the BID arrangements for a further five-year term.
If the vote is in favour, then we’ll be able to continue delivering our Christmas campaigns.
However, if the answer is no, then the funding for the Christmas lights and switchon event (and all other activity delivered by the BID) will have to come from somewhere else.
In the current economic climate, that is extremely unlikely. BID levy payers will get the opportunity to vote next May on our proposals for a new term.
Our proposals will build on what we’ve achieved so far with an increased focus on attracting new investment and lobbying on behalf of businesses in the town centre.
Artists’ impressions of Southport’s new Christmas tree