‘This town is special’ – Hitchin gets into the Christmas spirit for switch-on event

Smilling stallholders and their eager customers

Smilling stallholders and their eager customers - Credit: Archant

Crowds turned up in large numbers to see Hitchin’s Christmas lights switched on and to sample the festive atmosphere in Market Place.

Festive food at the Christmas light swtich on

Festive food at the Christmas light swtich on - Credit: Archant

More than 500 people turned out in the rain for the family-friendly event on Friday which saw 20 stalls offering their wares.

Former Blue Peter presenter Stuart Miles officially turned on the lights with Britain’s Got Talent 2013 finalist Gabz providing the music.

Stuart said: “I know Hitchin really well, I live nearby and I come to shop here and soak up the atmosphere on a regular basis. I love the independent shops and just having a coffee at one of the many great coffee places available here.

“It’s really fantastic, This town is special – there’s a real community feel to it. I’ve switched on the Hitchin lights for the last few years now and each year it seems to get bigger and bigger.

Stallholders get excited at Hitchin's Christmas light switch on. Picture: Geoff Ide.

Stallholders get excited at Hitchin's Christmas light switch on. Picture: Geoff Ide. - Credit: Archant


You may also want to watch:


“The square looks magical with the lights and it’s great so many people come out and support it.

“The people of Hitchin are really good as they always get behind its independent shops and they love supporting events like this which create such a great atmosphere and bring everyone together.

Most Read

“It was a great evening, there’s been great entertainment from people like Gabz along with some great stalls.”

Speaking to the Comet, Stevenage teenager Gabz said: “It’s amazing to be back in Hitchin. I’ve got loads of family here and I always used to come over when I was younger. Hitchin’s a great place with a really nice atmosphere and everyone’s always really happy. It’s just got a nice vibe. I’m in the middle of recording new songs so I’m looking forward to coming back and singing them for everyone one day soon!”

A swinging night of delight from Genie and the Jivebombers in the Market Place

A swinging night of delight from Genie and the Jivebombers in the Market Place - Credit: Archant

“The reception I got during my set was brilliant and it was great to see the lights being switched on. It was great.”

Maya Isbister, 10, from Hitchin said: “It was great to see Gabz sing and see the lights switched on. I also got her autograph afterwards and she was really nice – it was one of the best nights ever!”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter