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Thousands expected at St Albans Christmas Cracker

Publication date:

Thousands of people are expected at the St Albans Christmas Cracker – the event that launches the District’s festive season.

The spectacular street festival will take place in the City Centre from noon until 6pm on Sunday 20 November with St Peters Street closed to traffic to create a safe and vibrant atmosphere.

Among the attractions will be live music, a Santa’s grotto, scores of market stalls, funfair rides, face painting and street performers.

Much of the family-friendly entertainment will be free with something to suit people of all ages.

The Christmas lights will provide a seasonal backdrop with pyrotechnics on the main stage ensuring a dramatic finish to the day.

St Albans City and District Council is organising the Christmas Cracker which is sponsored by St Albans BID.

One new attraction for this year will be a Sustainability Activity Zone. This will be provided by community art group St Albans Rainbow Trails supported by the Scouts and sponsored by insurance advisory firm Mandy McNeil International.

People are asked to bring used crisp packets, cards, wrapping paper and magazines to decorate a sustainable Christmas Tree and Star. If possible, these should already have been cut into festive shapes.

Other attractions include:

The Main Stage: situated near the Beech House, there will be live music and other entertainment.

Acoustic Stage: located by the Anthropologie shop, there will be music from a host of performers.

Santa’s Grotto: held by the Alban Arena and run by the St Albans Rotary Club.

Market Traders: around 100 stalls selling a vast range of novelty gifts, seasonal produce and mouth-watering street food.

Children’s Christmas Arts and Crafts Marquee: free activities where children can make their own jingle bells instruments, eco wrapping paper and watercolour paintings. They can also help make a large Christmas tree and star from sustainable materials.

Community Safe Zone: a place for more vulnerable visitors to go if they need some peace and quiet.

Councillor Danny Clare, Lead Councillor for Events, said:

The Christmas Cracker is a fantastic way to get the District’s festive season underway and we are sure it will attract thousands of people to the City Centre.

There is lots of entertainment, much of it free, for people of all ages and interests with the event taking place throughout the afternoon and early evening.

The Cracker will also provide a welcome boost to the local economy by bringing many extra visitors to the City Centre where they will use our fabulous shops, pubs and restaurants as well as buy some of the produce on sale at market stalls.

St Albans BID are sponsoring the main stage and pyrotechnics. BID manager Vivien Canon said:

The Christmas Cracker is one of the biggest annual events that brings festive cheer to residents and visitors and truly kick-starts the holiday season.

St Albans BID’s family of shops are ready with windows dressed and shelves packed full of unique and inspiring gifts. Come and enjoy a magical start to your Christmas with live entertainment, fantastic shopping and exceptional seasonal food and drink.

Further details of the event are available here.

Picture: scene from the 2021 event.

Media contact: John McJannet, Principal Communications Officer: 01727 819533,