Christmas light switch-on events in Thanet

Christmas lights Photo Brian Whitehead

Christmas light switch-on events in the Thanet towns and villages are now well underway.

We’ve had Liberty X and East 17, along with Santa and the Grinch, at Westwood Cross and now it’s time for our towns to get the festivities going.

This weekend Christmas light switch-on fun takes place in Margate, Broadstairs, Ramsgate and Birchington.

Margate Old Town

Christmas is approaching Photo Louis McLaren

November 25, 11am – 5pm

Christmas light switch on 5pm with the Mayor of Margate

It’ll be an all day extravaganza filled to the brim with Christmas treats from traders, local singing groups, Christmas tree and activities for children.

Margate Cecil Square

Photo Carl Hudson

November 25, noon-6pm

Christmas tree light switch-on 6pm

Free parking (Mill Lane Carpark)

Live performances (noon-6pm)

Meet Santa at Santa’s Grotto


Christmas Market Stalls

Birchington Christmas

Photo Carl Hudson

November 25, 10am-5pm

A festive family fun day with activities including:

Christmas Trail

Food and Craft Fair

Family Games

Entertainment, Meet the Grinch

Carols around the tree

Santa’s Grotto


Children’s Crafts

Light Switch On

Organised by Birchington Traders Together and Birchington Parish Council


Photo Mark Milham

Noon-7pm, November 25

A day of shopping, eating, drinking, laughing, and singing with Christmas Light up the Park at the Christmas Market.

From 6pm at the front of Pierremont Hall, gather around the old Victorian lantern for that classic tradition of community Christmas Carol Singing.

People are invited to bring their own lanterns and torches to ‘Light up the park’. . Reusable flame-free lanterns will be available to purchase.

The Christmas tree lights this year will be on for the whole event.

The Christmas Market will include children’s choirs, carol singing, seasonal treats, plus local makers, crafters, designers, artists, food producers, caterers and shops.

Noon until 7pm: Brighter Days Market Stalls from local makers, crafters, designers, artists, food producers, caterers and more, as well as local businesses and shops.

Noon to 5.45pm: Local and School Choirs singing on the Portico Stage at the back of the Hall (schedule to be shared on social media)

Noon onwards:

* A children’s fun area with a fair ride and game stall

* Children’s Christmas Party in the Music Room, where children can decorate Christmas gingerbread shapes and have fun with our arts and crafts, followed by a visit from a special visitor (and his Elves)!

Tickets £10 per child. Email [email protected]

6pm: Christmas Carol Singing – everyone’s invited to the front of Pierremont Hall, around the old Victorian Lantern for that classic tradition of community Carol Singing,

Brought to you by Broadstairs and St Peter’s Town Council.

Ramsgate Christmas Lights Switch-On

Photo Malcolm Kirkaldie

November 26, noon-5pm

Ramsgate’s annual Christmas Lights Switch-On events and celebrations with switch on at 4.30pm

Ramsgate Christmas Fair combines with Ramsgate Handmade and Vintage Fair – with Christmas food and treats, gifts and decorations – all made locally.

Other events/attractions include

Santa’s Sleigh

Naughty Elves

Face Painting

Live entertainment

Miss Ramsgate & Her Court

Children’s Workshops

Snow Machine

Santa’s Grotto

‘(S)Elfish’ Trail

Plus: A celebration of light at St George’s Church Ramsgate

Free Entry – donations are welcome.

Sunday 26th November – from 5pm

St George’s Church, Church Hill, Ramsgate, CT11 8RA

From 5pm join St George’s church, to celebrate the first year of Project 200. There will be refreshments, and entertainment will be provided by Free Range Orchestra, with animations and video projections by the students of University for the Creative Arts.

Come directly to the church or follow Samba Ya Wantsum up the High Street from the Ramsgate Christmas Light Switch On event.

Ramsgate Christmas Illuminations at the harbour

Photo Brian Whitehead

December 1-31

Wonderful spectacle of boats and local businesses lit up for the festive season

The berth holders of Ramsgate Royal Harbour are busy decorating their vessels in the period leading up to Christmas.

Lights are judges in a variety of categories with a prize-giving at Ramsgate’s Royal Yacht Club.

Westgate Christmas Light Switch-On

Photo Louis McLaren

December 3, 11am to 5pm

Westgate-on-Sea Annual Christmas Fayre & Lights Switch-On

Station Road plays host to a fantastic day for all the family – great shopping, live music, and delicious food!

Father Christmas in person (located in train station reception)

Live on-stage entertainment throughout the day across two stages including – Coastal Choir, MOS Cast of Dick Whittington, Treble Bass, Off the Hook Productions, FNK Haus

Fun Fair

Christmas Market

Craft Stalls

Food and drink stalls

4.30pm Lights switch-on


December 2, noon until 5pm

GRASS community organisation celebrate Christmas at The Oval Bandstand and Lawns in Eastern Esplanade.

There will be mulled wine, shopping, food, community stalls and free live music.

Santa Claus will be making an appearance in his magical grotto and the team will be lighting up the bandstand.


  1. Bugger Christmas. One big rip off, especially in this cost of living crisis.
    Pity those who struggle to get by with lots of children. Besides, is this a truly Christian country? I don’t think it is. I think Christmas is an excuse for material excess but can we afford it?
    It just makes it harder for those who can’t.

  2. I do feel sorry for the families that feel that they HAVE to have the biggest and best Christmas for their children because of peer pressure from social media and “friends” and made to feel inadequate if they cannot buy little Jonnie the latest phone/game/trainers.

    Why not follow the examples above, after all, this is supposed to be the Season of Goodwill to all men, not the season of I’ve got more than you for Christmas.

    Consider making a family donation to a local or national charity instead of buying all the shoddy gimmick gifts available in their millions online.

    AND, if you do get a gift that really is not useful or wanted, please donate this to a local charity or re-gift it!

    Just to say, as a child, in the 60’s, we had one advent calendar, just pictures no chocolate, and at the end of the Christmas season, Mum carefully pushed all the windows closed, and out it came the next year. That was really something to look forward to! And fat free!!!!!

    A shout out to all those who work in the retail, service, caring, medical and other industries who work over the festive period. Seasons Greetings to you all. Hope you get to spend some time with your loved ones.

  3. Oliver Cromwell banned Christmas and historians ostracised him for it.
    Today, he would be proved right to have done so.
    His reasons were purely religious but ours should be to relieve the poorer members of society from economic stress.

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