Reindeers, Santa Claus and Apprentice star - Peterborough gets all lit up for Christmas

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Peterborough put itself into the Christmas spirit with a series of festive events over the past few days.

Father Christmas was very busy as he made his way around the city, with a large crowd joining him in the city centre on Friday night for the annual lights switch-on where he was joined by special guest Khadija Kalifa, who is currently starring in reality TV show The Apprentice.

The Christmas lights switch-on in the city centre

The Christmas lights switch-on in the city centre

This was the first year the switch-on had taken place on a Friday night, but many people turned out for the occasion where they were entertained by music and fireworks.

Hosted by Heart FM's Kev and Ros, Khadjia was joined by Father Christmas, leader of Peterborough City Council Cllr John Holdich, Mayor of Peterborough Cllr Chris Ash, Mayoress Doreen Roberts, Dean of Peterborough The Very Revd Chris Dalliston and Miss Peterborough 2018 Laura Bailey for the switch-on.

The next morning saw Queensgate Shopping Centre's switch-on, which this year included two lit-up large reindeers being put up by Queensgate bus station and the footbridge entrance to the shopping centre.

The ‘Festive Fiesta” also included music, magic and dancing bellboys, mischievous elves, drummers and nutcracker ballerinas to entertain shoppers.

Shoppers were also given the chance to take part in a family fun Christmas game show in which they could win thousands of pounds worth of prizes donated by Queensgate and its retailers, including an iPad, Dyson vacuum cleaner, Beats earphones, £100 gift cards and more.

There is also a return for Santa’s grotto which will remain at the shopping centre until December 24.

Santa Claus also made a special appearance at Notcutts in Ham Lane on Sunday to open the garden centre's Christmas grotto, while last Thursday saw the lights switch-on at Serpentine Green in Hampton.

Peterborough City Market is also hosting its first ever Christmas Fayre with a lights switch-on this Friday from noon to 6pm.

There will be crafts, food and drink and live music.

And the Peterborough One Retail Park is having its switch-on this Saturday from 5pm, with the event including a fireworks show.