Santa Claus is bringing extra joy to dozens of Whaley Bridge children when he arrives by boat at the canal basin on Friday evening (29 Nov). They will be cheering him ashore and lighting his way towards his grotto with the lanterns they made for the lantern and fireworks display early in November. There was disappointment then when high winds and rain caused their lantern parade to be cancelled. On Friday Santa will see the ‘premiere’ of the lanterns that many of the children made themselves, together with friendly aliens and special effects made for the original Memorial Park event.
The Lantern walk will start at the Bowling club at 5.30 and head down to the Canal Basin. Santa lands at the canal basin at 6pm. He will walk up Canal Street to Footsteps drop in centre, where he will distribute small gifts to children later. Meanwhile in the Mechanics’ Institute, local organisations and charities will hold a Christmas Market.
As crowds gather for late shopping and the lighting up of the Christmas tree, the Whaley Bridge-based Powderkegs border morris dance group will be providing outdoor entertainment in their flamboyant outfits. The explosive colours are a reminder of Whaley’s old gunpowder industry.
Cllr Martin Thomas, chair of Whaley Bridge Town Council, will switch on the tree at the station car park at 7pm, followed by carols accompanied by Whaley Bridge band.
- The bright red restored telephone box, at the entrance to the car park, is nownearly complete. Advertisements for local events and businesses fill the windows, a handy information point for visitors arriving by train, bus or car.