The programme for the Hertford Christmas Gala on Friday 28th November has been finalised. Visitors to the town centre will be able to enjoy carol signing, fun fair rides, a festive market, the switching on of the town’s Christmas Lights, fire breathing with live music performances from local schools and bands.


Santa and his reindeer will be in the town centre between 4.30 pm and 8.30 pm. 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 around 8pm.    


Hertford Baptist Church will be performing the Living Nativity with a real donkey near the War Memorial in Parliament Square. Young children will be able to dress up, have their pictures taken by Photography by Louise and obtain a free copy of the photo from the Kodak store in Railway Street. Hertford Town Ladies and Youth Football Clubs will be running a Beat the Santa Goalie session in Bircherley Green Shopping Centre. A face painting station will also be located near the shopping centre.


Four half hour long “bite sized” Christmas ghost walks along Fore Street will be run on the hour between 4pm and 7pm starting outside Marks and Spencer. Tickets cost £2 per person and 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 starting with the Simon Balle Big Band. The Hertford Baptist Church Men’s Choir will be on stage singing Christmas Carols from 5.40pm.


Just after 6.15pm the Mayor of Hertford, Councillor Miss Chantal Geall, will be presenting the trophy to the winner of the Hertford’s annual Cheerful Trader competition and prizes allocated to the winners of the Winning Windows competition. The prizes include vouchers from Photography by Louise, pantomime tickets from Hertford Theatre and a hamper of soaps from the Luxury Soap Shop.


The town’s Christmas Lights, including new cross street displays in Railway Street, will be switched on at 6.30pm by the Mayor.


Following the lights switch on, there will be fire-breathing display by Andy and Lee Stevens to the music of Schrodinger Strings. Singers Melody Causton and Declan Mckeena will round off the stage programme with acoustic performances until 8.30pm.


The Festive Food and Craft Street Market in Market Place will operate between 3.30 p.m. and 8.30 pm and many of the shops in the town centre will stay open late.


Hertford Museum and also Mudlarks Garden Cafe will be open until 8pm offering children the opportunity to visit Santa in either location. Tickets cost £2.50 each including a present from Santa. Visitors are asked to visit the venue on the day to secure their time slot.


Chairman of Hertford Town Council’s Development & Leisure Committee, Councillor Miss Isabel Sigmac, said: “The Gala is getting bigger and better every year. More local organisations and traders are involved in this year’s event than ever before. Hertford residents can keep up to date on Gala activity and the Think Christmas Think Hertford day on the 6th December (which is national Small Business Saturday) by visiting the news and events pages of the town centre website”