Pop goes the council’s festive lights budget

The Lancashire Hotpots
The Lancashire Hotpots

Council chiefs have put together St Helens’ biggest ever Christmas lights switch-on event - at a cost of almost £100,000.

The bumper event will officially herald the start of the Christmas shopping period and will feature a host of well-known bands.

Topping the bill are 90s chart-toppers The Lightning Seeds, with support from Scouting For Girls.

Britain’s Got Talent winners Collabro and St Helens comedy folk combo, The Lancashire Hotpots, are also included in a star-studded line-up.

Council chiefs have spent £45,000 on artists’ fees and £37,600 on lights and decorations, the St Helens Reporter can reveal.

They hope the lavish bash will lure thousands of shoppers to the town centre, with the expected extra spend in local shops over the following weeks more than off-setting the original lay-out.

Council leader Barrie Grunewald said: “This year’s lights switch-on will be the hottest ticket in town – and best of all, it’s completely free!”

The switch-on on Saturday, November 15 starts at 4pm. After the lights are turned on, an aftershow party is being held where the Lightning Seeds and others will perform.

St Helens town centre traders are welcoming the anticipated influx of visitors.

Ali Tyrer, owner of Tyrers department store said: “The lights switch-on is always good for business – but this year certainly promises to be something special.”

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