SWINDON will deck the halls this weekend as the countdown to Christmas begins in earnest.

The Designer Outlet's decorations go up tomorrow, while Father Christmas will take residence in his grotto at the Brunel Shopping Centre from Sunday.

He'll also be meeting children and hearing whether they've been naughty or nice at the Outlet from November 30. Santa will take centre stage in Arctic adventure packed with photo opportunities – including penguins, polar bears, reindeer, a sleigh and a huge wreath.

The Christmas lights will be switched on across the Swindon area later in the month.
InSwindon BID’s big town centre switch-on will happen at Wharf Green at 6pm on Saturday, November 16. Turning on the lights will be former JLS singer Aston Merrygold along with this year’s Wyvern panto performers Michelle Collins and Chris Jarvis. 

Havelock Square will host a Christmas market and funfair between 10am and 8pm on the day, featuring a variety of independent stores.

The Old Town Christmas lights switch-on will take place on Wood Street on Sunday, November 24 at 5pm. Lights will be turned on with the help of bobsledder Corie Mapp and the event will include a host of food stands from local outlets including Gurtwings and Dotty’s Café. 

Highworth and Royal Wootton Bassett will go head-to-head, with both festive lights events being held at 6pm on Friday, November 29.