Hertford residents and visitors will be able to meet Santa and his Reindeer at the town’s annual Christmas Gala to be held in the town centre on Friday 27th November 2015 between 3.30pm and 8.30pm. This year the Gala is being sponsored by Longmores Solicitors in Castle Street and Pets4Vets in Hertford which is located in Pets at Home in the Madford Retail Park on Ware Road.
Santa will arrive at his grotto in the town centre accompanied by his Reindeer at 4.30pm. His Reindeer will then be stabled in Parliament Square until 8pm along with their friend Owl.
Visitors to the town centre will be able to enjoy a variety of seasonal entertainment, carol singing, fun fair rides, a festive market, late night shopping, the switching on of the Christmas lights with live music performances from local schools and bands.
Hertford Baptist Church will be performing the Living Nativity with a real donkey in Market Place. Young children will be able to dress up, have their pictures taken and obtain a free copy of the photo from the Kodak store in Railway Street.
Three half hour long “bite sized” Christmas themed ghost walks along Fore Street will be run at 5.45pm, 7pm and 8pm starting outside Marks and Spencer. The 5.45pm and 7pm walks will be suitable for children. Tickets £2.50 per person must be purchased in advance from the Town and Tourist Information Centre, 10 Market Place, Hertford or Tel 01992 584322.
Live music and entertainment will be on a stage in Salisbury Square from 4.30pm and there will be a variety of street entertainment including Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and even Olaf from Frozen. The Simon Balle Big Band will kick off the music on stage from 4.30pm to help everybody get in the festive spirit. This will be followed by fire-breathing to music, carol singing and live bands.
There will be a Festive Food, Craft and Charity street market in Market Place between 3.30pm and 8.30pm and many shops in Hertford Town Centre will stay open late.
At 6.15pm The Mayor of Hertford, Councillor Linda Radford will be presenting the trophy to the winner of the Hertford Cheerful Trader competition and prizes to the winners of the Christmas Winning Windows competition for town centre businesses. The prizes include vouchers from Oak Room, pantomime tickets from Hertford Theatre and free tickets for a gig at the Corn Exchange.
The town’s Christmas lights will be switched on at 6.30pm by The Mayor, Cllr Linda Radford and Santa Claus.
Chairman of Hertford Town Council’s Development & Leisure Committee, Councillor Jane Sartin, said: “The Christmas Gala is an important event in the Hertford community calendar. It gets local people and visitors into the festive mood at the start of the most important time of the year for town centre businesses. Hertford has a lot to offer – individual and specialist shops, history and award winning food and drink outlets.
“The annual ‘Think Christmas Think Hertford’ Christmas shopping day will also be taking place the day after the Gala, on Saturday 28th November, making for a great couple of days to focus on Christmas shopping in Hertford ”.
Hertford Museum will be open until 8pm as part of the Christmas Gala. Amongst other things you will be able to meet Santa, enjoycarol singing, take part in simple sparkly crafts and listen to a Christmas story.