Our Colchester

Our Colchester BIDs Festive Light Parade launches Christmas in Colchester 2023

The BIG Festive Switch On event on Wednesday 15th November was a huge success, drawing in thousands of visitors to the city centre. Our Colchester Business Improvement District (BID) is proud to work with partners to deliver a now much-anticipated annual event for the whole city. 

The Festive Light Parade, organised by the BID saw hundreds of participants from community projects, schools and the public, which lit up the streets with dazzling displays of lights and colours. The parade was accompanied by partner events, including entertainment at Firstsite, Mercury Theatre, and the Lion Walk Light Switch On. 

Chief Executive of Our Colchester BID Sam Good comments “It’s a pleasure to deliver festive events for Colchester which invigorates the high street and surrounding areas of our City. This year's Festive Light Parade was a great success and it was a joy to get so many different community groups involved in celebrating the start of the winter season in Colchester. 

Thank you to our event sponsor John Fowlers Solicitors for their support, and all partners who collaborated to make the BIG Festive Switch On a wonderful event for visitors. “ 

This year's parade included two large mobile puppets, Farrah the Fox a symbol of prosperity for the highstreet, and an elephant referencing Colchester's long standing history being the first recorded to have an elephant in 43AD brought to the city by the Romans.

The parade also included a large Chinese dragon puppet, Yiddish Musicians, a brass band, and dancers. The festivities of the parade finished at Mercury Theatre with the switching on of the Christmas Tree underneath the Jumbo, and entertainment on stage.

The parade and finale entertainment at Mercury Theatre was streamed live on a dedicated viewing screen at the Mercury Theatre, with parade also being livestreamed on the InColchester Facebook page. Captioning of the screen and livestream was provided by StageText to support the accessibility of the event. 


More festive events will be happening in Colchester in the lead up to the 25th of December, including Late Wednesdays, and the InColchester Festive Market on the 10th of December. 

All information about family events and activities can be found at christmasincolchester.co.uk