Towns and villages get ready to light the way to Christmas

Elite Studio Dancers at Kelso's switch on last year.
Elite Studio Dancers at Kelso's switch on last year.

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

Kelso kicks off the festive fun with lighting-up celebrations this Saturday. Festive entertainment will be on offer in the town centre from 5pm until 7.30pm, with the lights being switched on at 7pm.

Musical entertainment as the lights were turned on at Earlston last year.

Musical entertainment as the lights were turned on at Earlston last year.

There will be a children’s funfair, musical entertainment and dancing in the town centre.

Newtown St Boswells will follow suit on Sunday, when Santa will lead a procession leaving from Milestone Garden and Leisure at 5.30pm. The lights switch-on will take place at the village’s Christmas tree at 5.45pm before refreshments at the Newtown Community Wing.

Jedburgh’s winter festival takes place on Friday, December 1. The parade will leave from Jedburgh Grammar School at 5.30pm and proceed to the Square, where the tree lights will go on at 6pm. Entertainment follows afterwards in the town hall.

Next Saturday, December 2, Galashiels Rotary Club’s Christmas market takes place between 11am and 4pm.

Robert Hutchinson and Sophie-Grace Murray at Innerleithen's switch on last year.

Robert Hutchinson and Sophie-Grace Murray at Innerleithen's switch on last year.

Selkirk unveils its lights on the same day. Entertainment will begin with festive five-a-side football in Bog Park at 10.30am; a Christmas film in Rowlands at 12.30pm; an elf hunt from the post office at 2pm and a Christmas market in Market Place from noon. Music groups will entertain throughout the afternoon before Santa arrives at 4.50pm for the switch on of the lights at 5pm.

Hawick’s celebrations take place that day too. This year there will be festive entertainment in Trinity Gardens between 3.45 and 6pm, with Santa switching on the lights at 5pm.

Peebles holds its event on Thursday, December 7, and there there will be late-night shopping from 6pm and music from Stardust Musical. The lights will be switched on at 7.30pm by Beltane queen Emily Carrick-Anderson.

Lauder’s Christmas lights festival group has organised its big switch-on for Saturday, December 9. The public hall will be open from 4.30pm for games and music, while in the Avenue there will be a funfair and barbecue. Santa will be there and the lights will be switched at 7pm.

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

Earlston will welcome a visit from Santa too that day, its lights being unveiled at 6pm.