Here’s all the times you need for Christmas lights switch-on events across the Borders

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

By Kathryn Wylie
Wednesday, 20th November 2019, 10:51 am
Sam Dean's dance crew at last year's Christmas lights switch-on celebrations in Hawick.
Sam Dean's dance crew at last year's Christmas lights switch-on celebrations in Hawick.

Newtown kicks off the festive fun with lighting-up celebrations this Sunday with a Christmas shopping fair in the Community Wing from 2pm to 4.30pm.

Santa will then lead a procession leaving from Milestone Garden and Leisure at 5.30pm.

A VIP guest will switch on the lights at the village’s Christmas tree at 5.45pm before refreshments and more shopping at Newtown Community Wing from 6pm to 8pm.

Jedburgh’s winter festival takes place next Friday, November 29.

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.

Kelso follows suit with its celebrations on Saturday, November 30.

Seasonal entertainment will be on offer in the town centre from 4pm until 7.30pm. Santa will be in his grotto from 4.30pm and the lights will be switched on at 6.30pm.

There will also be a children’s funfair, musical entertainment and dancing in the town centre as well as a seasonal food and drink to enjoy.

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 1pm and 6pm, with Santa handing out gifts to primary school age pupils. There’ll be more than 20 stall offering up local crafts, gifts, food and drinks. There’ll be music, dancing face painting and huskies too.

Santa will switch on the lights at the tree at around 5pm.

Galashiels will host a switch-on event that day too, with entertainment on offer in Bank Street gardens from 10am to 6pm. That includes an Alpaca petting zoo, children’s entertainers, live music, a Christmas market and festive refreshments. Langlee choir will sing at 1pm, followed by the town band at 2pm and Little Mix tribute girl band Little Chix at 3pm. The lights will be turned on at 5pm followed by a children’s torchlight procession at 5.15pm.

Peebles holds its event on Thursday, December 5, and there will be late-night shopping along the High Street from 6pm. There’ll be a funfair and performances from Kingsland School choir and the town’s silver and pipe bands before this year’s Beltane Queen Jenna Jones helps Santa turn on the lights at 7.30pm.

Selkirk unveils its lights the next night on Friday, December 6. Entertainment on offer includes a children’s market featuring stall from the junior football club, St Joseph’s School, Rowlands, the Guides and Bannerfield Buskers, in Market Place from 6pm to 8.30pm.

Musical groups will entertain, and there’ll be a giant snow globe, a special visit from Disney’s Anna and Elsa from Frozen, and seasonal refreshments on offer before Santa arrives at around 7pm for the switch-on of the lights.

Lauder’s Christmas lights festival group has organised its big switch-on for Saturday, December 7.

The town’s public hall will be open from 2.30pm for games and music and food, while there’ll be a funfair outside in the Avenue.

Santa will be there in his grotto too, and the lights will be switched at 5pm. A family ceilidh follows in the town hall from 7.30pm to 11pm.

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 8, A parade leaves the east end of Earlston around 5.30pm 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.