HALSTEAD Town Council has released details of its plans for the Christmas festivities this year.

The council has revealed there will be once again an official Christmas lights switch-on and fair to mark the festive holiday season.

This will be followed by the return of the spectacular Halstead torchlight procession.

The fair and switch-on will take place on the same day one after the other, making for one big Christmas bonanza.

Both events have been part of the town for many years, with hundreds enjoying the start of the Christmas period.

The fair is organised by Linda Smith, Heather Pittuck, Dave Rosoman and Andy Munday on behalf of Halstead Town Council.

Last year’s event saw hundreds of people attend, with entertainment including the Hedingham Singers, Vocal Reflections, Dougie the Dino, Amazing Kev with his circus skills, a balloonist, and DJ AJ Sounds.

Crowds then flock to Halstead Public Gardens to enjoy the switch-on of the Christmas lights.

Last year, Halstead mayor Jackie Pell did the honours, with children from each of the three Halstead primary schools - Richard de Clare Primary, St Andrew's Junior and Infants, and Holy Trinity Junior and Infants.

This year, Santa will once again make an appearance, with carols from the town’s Brownies on the bandstand as well as a snow machine.

The Christmas Fair and light swich-on will take place on Saturday, November 25, with the fair on from 10am to 4pm followed by the big switch-on.

The town’s annual torchlight procession will take place on Wednesday, December 6, from 7pm.

This year marks the 51st year of the procession, which sees hundreds of residents parade through the town with their torches, lighting up the High Street.

Town mayor Jackie Pell says she is once again looking forward to this year’s events.

“We are all looking forward to it, adults and children alike”, she said.

“Everything is all in hand, the tree has been ordered, everything has been booked and it should be another lovely Christmas for the town.”