Winter wonderland for Derry

A few frosty characters at the Guildhall Switch On.
A few frosty characters at the Guildhall Switch On.

The Mayor of Derry & Strabane has encouraged families to take part in the city’s programme of Christmas festivities over the coming weeks.

Following last week’s big Switch On, the programme starts tonight with the Council’s Sound of Light Festival trail, which runs today and tomorrow, Friday and Saturday, November 27 and 28.

The Sound of Light festival will begin with a magical procession through the city centre from 6pm this evening featuring a whole host of colourful Christmas characters brought to life by production company LUXE.

The trail will weave through the streets leaving from Bishop Street carpark, making its way through the Cathedral Quarter, then via Pump Street and Ferryquay Street and down through the city centre until it reaches the Guildhall Square, before finally stopping at Union Hall Place.

The Guildhall Square will also host a special festive market throughout the weekend, from Friday to Monday.

On Saturday evening, a special light trail along the Walls will begin at St Columb’s Cathedral, running from 5pm to 9pm, with an organ recital by candlelight scheduled for inside the historic building.

Other events include screenings of Derry’s own favourite animation Puffins Rock for the little ones in the Garden of Reflection, and a series of live musical performances at various venues.

Best Boy Grip and Declan McLaughlin will feature at St Augustine’s Church at 6.30pm on Saturday, while some of the fresh new Sync talent will be performing in Cafe Nervosa, as well as choirs and musicians scattered throughout the city.

There is also an opportunity to join the Sound of Light cycle leaving from Waterloo Place.

Other events up and coming in Derry and Strabane in the run up to Christmas include Festive Markets at Guildhall Square from November 27-29, the Craft Village from December 10-12 and 18-20 and Bishop’s Gate, December 19.

There will be festive weekend activities at the Craft Village throughout December and a Christmas Tea Dance on December 2 at the Guildhall, as well as the Mayor’s Christmas Welcome of family friendly activities and choral performances over the weekend of December 19 and 20.

For more information about events taking place visit www.festivetime.com.