Halifax Christmas Lights Switch On

Halifax is on the move! This year’s Christmas event changed from a static display to a more exciting and inclusive Christmas experience – a parade creatively produced by our talented team at Handmade Productions. The parade was commissioned by Discover Halifax to launch their busy Christmas programme in the town centre in the run up to Christmas.

The event involved reindeers on stilts, a ‘snow bringer’ on a chariot, and elf puppet characters from A Christmas Wish for Halifax – the town’s own unique Christmas story.

We held puppet and lantern-making workshops across Halifax with local community groups including St Augustine’s Centre, Mount Pellon Primary School, Calderdale Sixth Form College, Brunswick Centre and for the general public inside Halifax Borough Market.

The parade was an absolute delight and the huge crowds certainly enjoyed the spectacle! We want to thank everyone who made the first ever Halifax Christmas Parade such a joy! This includes the huge team of volunteers, handmade productions artists and crew, families, community groups, amazing audiences, everyone at Discover Halifax UK and The Piece Hall.

You can read more about the event and see more photos via the Halifax Courier and Yorkshire Post.

If I could sum things up in a sentence it would be that you spread joy across multiple generations and made it feel so personal to everyone at the same time.

We’re over from East Yorkshire for a winter break for my husband’s birthday and stumbled across the lantern making workshop yesterday morning. From that moment when we were approached by your lovely colleagues we felt part of the community. My children are 9&11 now and, let’s face it, we’re probably coming to the latter stages of them thinking things are magical! My word will I savour forever the expressions of awe and wonder they had on their faces as they stood at the side of the road with their lanterns and the characters, dancers, musicians were all making them feel involved! I’ve never seen so many smiles on some many generations in such a small geographical footprint! Memories for everyone to treasure forever! Thank you!!! Katie Howie

It was a great opportunity to bring our community together through the making of the lanterns and puppets (for free!) and then such a lovely experience to be part of the parade with our handmade lanterns surrounded by the children and parents who made them. What a great atmosphere in town and I can’t get over how many people lined the streets to see the Christmas lights switched on and the wonderful puppets, lanterns of all shapes and sizes, stilt walking, drumming and general revelry that makes up the parade.

I really hope we can do it again next year … I’ll be wearing an elf outfit to really get into the Christmas spirit. Such fun! Lynn Honour

We absolutely loved it, thanks everyone for all your efforts. The puppets were amazing. I loved that you all looked to be enjoying yourselves so much, such a great vibe. And you spent so much care and time leaning down to the little ones …. So friendly and personal. Thanks 😊 Sue Demin
It was brilliant. Thank you for your efforts and involvement with the community. Magical, and fingers crossed you will be back next year, as I am sure you will have loads more people wanting to make lanterns! The musicians deserve a shout out too. My favourite was the moon, although they were all superb, you have made so many people happy, at a time when all needed cheering up. Georgie Lawson

Type: Parade
Location: Halifax
Date: 18th November 2023
Client: Discover Halifax