Join Lee Butler for the launch of Liverpool’s most magical Christmas
Excited crowds lined the streets of Liverpool ONE this evening to herald the start of the festive season in the city.
Thousands of visitors from across the North West gathered to see what is believed to be the UK’s biggest Christmas tree illuminated. The iconic 30 metre tree, located on Paradise Street, will remain lit until January 3rd.
Guests were memorised by the 10 minute lightshow spectacular created in partnership with the Liverpool Empire Theatre’s Creative Learning Team. Festive projections and songs filled the corridors of Paradise Street to leave people spellbound while snow confetti gave the effect of a white Christmas.
It was a magical evening from start to finish with street entertainment, live music and special treats to keep spirits up on a chilly evening. The gift giving started early as Liverpool ONE and their festive helpers gave away thousands of Christmas crackers, each filled with a special prize varying from a £500 Liverpool ONE gift card, 2-4-1 ice skating at Liverpool ONE’s Ice Festival to a free meal for two every month for a year at Wagamamas.
Radio City presenters Lee Butler and Dave Kelly hosted the main stage on the roof of Starbucks on Paradise Street. Five local bands performed in front of the waiting crowd.
On South John Street, shoppers were joined by panto stars from Merseyside’s various theatre groups for a series of special performances. Stars from Shrek the Musical at the Empire and Epstein’s Cinderella were among those giving fans an exclusive sneak peek.
Liverpool ONE’s luxury shopping district, Peter’s Lane, offered visitors a more classical take on Christmas. Liverpool’s Philharmonic String Quartet and the Northern String Quartet performed a number of traditional Christmas songs, while ballroom dancers waltzed throughout.
Donna Howitt, marketing and business performance director at Liverpool ONE, said: “It is an incredible honour to launch Christmas in Liverpool.
“The sheer scale of this project has been immense but seeing the smiling faces of thousands of people makes it all worthwhile. Christmas is all about making iconic memories, especially for children, something that will last with people for a lifetime. We hope we’ve achieved that this year!”
Chris Brown, Marketing Liverpool director, said: “Liverpool ONE’s celebrations have showed just how magical the city is at Christmas. Our vision and that of our partners will ensure Liverpool continues to enchant visitors and grow its reputation as a must-visit festival destination.
“Liverpool is thriving. I am very proud of what we are achieving together. Seeing Liverpool celebrate in such fantastic style is a wonderful way to mark the official start of our One Magical City celebrations.”
Christmas in Liverpool is full to brim with activities this year. Bar Hütte, located under Liverpool ONE’s Christmas tree on Paradise Street opens from 11am every day until January 3rd and serves a range of Alpine-inspired drinks. After a trip along this year’s Snowflake Trail, visitors can also take advantage of Bar Hutte’s themed chalets dotted around the base of the tree. Each with their own unique theme, it is the perfect location for those looking for a moment’s rest.
Returning to Chavasse Park is the Ice Festival, filled with plenty of family friendly activities including Liverpool’s only outdoor Ice Rink, the UK’s largest Ice Slide – now extended to three lanes – as well as plenty of fairground rides. The Après Lodge is the perfect after show location to help warm the spirits. For the brave, remember to wrap-up warm if you plan to take a look around this year’s sub-zero Ice Bar. Made entirely of ice, this year’s chilling space will be filled with fascinating optical illusions.
For the shopaholics, there are more than 600 brands to choose from. In addition to all of your high street favourites, why not venture over to Peter’s Lane, home to brands including Michael Kors, Hobbs, Ted Baker London and Reiss, in addition to the only Beauty Bazaar Harvey Nichols in the country. With personal shoppers at hand to cater for your every need, Liverpool ONE really is the destination of choice this Christmas.
Liverpool ONE is within easy access of Chester, Warrington, St Helens, Wigan, Southport and Wirral, with on-site parking and excellent bus and rail links. So whether you live or work in the city, or just a stone’s throw away, everyone is encouraged to join the party atmosphere and soak up the magical Christmas spirit that Liverpool ONE is creating.
Liverpool ONE’s magical Christmas is part of a citywide campaign this year to create ‘One Magical City’, co-ordinated by Marketing Liverpool. For a full programme of all of the enchanting events across the city visit www.onemagicalcity.com