A FUN and festive programme of free family events is once again coming to Oldham this Christmas.
We'll be lighting up the town with live performances, a parade, brass bands and a splash of yuletide cheer.
Cllr Arooj Shah, Leader of Oldham Council, said: “It’s that festive time of year again and it brings me so much joy to announce our events Christmas events programme for 2023.
“These events capture the spirit of the season as well as providing fun and free activities for families, as we know cash can be tight for some.
"I'm so proud that we as a Council can work with performers from across the country, local community groups and arts organisations alike to put on a truly special events programme for people of all ages to enjoy."
Check out the line-up…
Oldham Christmas Parade – Saturday 18 November, 12noon, Oldham town centre
The countdown to Christmas wouldn’t be complete without the annual Oldham Christmas Parade, and we're thrilled to announce that it's returning for an afternoon of festive cheer and community spirit.
Join Santa and his merry bunch of mates as they make their way through the town centre and High Street. The parade will include more than 200 talented local performers and community group members who always put on a show for those watching – so expect music, dancing and cheer all round. No live animals will be involved in the parade this year, but we'll have community groups and performers from across the borough as usual.
Don’t miss the brilliant festive performances from Dobcross Silver Band and the Oldham Scottish Pipe Band.
The parade kicks off at 12 noon at Old Town Hall and will make its way through the heart of our town centre, so gather your family and friends and make it a day to remember.
Festive Entertainment – Saturday 18 November, 12.30 – 5.30pm
The celebrations continue well into the afternoon with a heap of festive entertainment. There will be meet and greet opportunities with Santa and his elf, an operatic Christmas tree and Musical Ruth and their jingle jangle piano all baubled and tinseled up! From jolly Christmas tunes to cheeky and delightful performers, there's something for everyone to enjoy and get involved with.
Christmas Lights Switch On Show ‘The Wrong Reindeer’ and Firework Finale – Saturday November 18, 5.30pm
To finish the packed day of free entertainment, the annual Light Switch On Show returns at the historic Old Town Hall.
Join us for a spectacular outdoor show, The Wrong Reindeer, a bespoke show created by Oldham Theatre Workshop, especially for the event.
The tale tells the story of a donkey who dreams of being a reindeer and a child who's lost the magic of wishing. As winter sets in, an adventure begins that will remind everyone of the true meaning of Christmas.
The show will be followed by the switch on of the Christmas lights – and the tree! – and a festive firework show that will light up Oldham’s skyline.
Brass Monkeys Festival – Saturday 9 December, 11am–3pm, Oldham town centre
Head into the town centre and listen to music throughout the day, as local and national brass bands come together to provide the perfect soundtrack for your Christmas shopping.
Check out music from bands including Grimethorpe Colliery Band stars of ‘Brassed Off’, Fat Cat Brass, Oldham Music Service and many more. This event is not to be missed – think Whit Friday, but at Christmas.
Alongside this, the Heritage, Libraries and Arts Service are hosting an array of events, including showings of The Wrong Reindeer, a 20th anniversary screening of the hilarious film ELF and hosting a Christmas Books and Bobs Fair.
Don't miss out on these charming winter events in Oldham. Mark your calendars, gather your loved ones, and get ready for a holiday season like no other.
For more information about our Christmas events programme visit: www.oldham.gov.uk/christmas
Get involved on social media and share your pictures with us using #ChristmasinOldham