Borders set to sparkle as Christmas light switch-on events line up

Santa's visit to Kelso last year.
Santa's visit to Kelso last year.

The Borders begins its countdown to Christmas this weekend, with towns and villages organising their light switch-on celebrations from then into next month.

Kelso kicks off the festive fun with lighting-up celebrations this Saturday.

Seasonal entertainment will be on offer in the town centre from 5pm until 7.30pm, with the lights being switched on at 7pm.

There will be a children’s funfair, musical entertainment and dancing in the town centre as well as a children’s festive bake-off competition.

Newtown will follow suit on Sunday, when Santa will lead a procession leaving from Milestone Garden and Leisure at 5.30pm.

Its lights switch-on will take place at the village’s Christmas tree at 5.45pm before refreshments at Newtown Community Wing.

Jedburgh’s winter festival takes place next Friday, November 30.

A parade, led by the pipe band, will leave from Jedburgh Grammar School at 5.30pm and proceed to the square, where the tree lights will go on at 6pm. Christmas carols around the tree will follow before everyone is invited inside the town hall to meet Santa, enjoy entertainment and visit the craft stalls.

Next Saturday, December 1, Galashiels Rotary Club’s Christmas market takes place from 11am, with the town’s lights going on at 5pm from Bank Street..

Selkirk unveils its lights on the same day. Entertainment on offer includes a Christmas market in Market Place from 9.30am.

Musical groups will entertain throughout the afternoon from 2pm before Santa arrives at 4.30pm for the switch-on of the lights around 5pm.

Hawick’s celebrations take place that day too. This year, there will be festive entertainment including a market, music and huskies in Trinity Gardens between 2.30pm and 6pm, with Santa switching on the lights at 5.30pm.

Peebles holds its event on Thursday, December 6, and there there will be late-night shopping from 6pm.

The lights will be switched on at 7.30pm by Beltane queen Katy Blackwood and Santa.

Lauder’s Christmas lights festival group has organised its big switch-on for Saturday, December 8.

The town’s public hall will be open from 3pm for games and music and food, while in the Avenue there will be a funfair and barbecue.

Santa will be there, and the lights will be switched at 6pm.

Melrose holds its event on the same day, with a short parade at 5.30pm followed by a switch-on in Market Square.

Earlston will welcome a visit from Santa on Sunday, December 9, A parade leaves the east end of Earlston around 5.15pm and arriving at the square where the lights will be unveiled at 6pm.

Innerleithen’s switch-on takes place on the same day, with shops and clubs running events around the town from 2pm. The lights will be switched on at 4.30pm.