Christmas tree will dazzle

Liverpool’s giant Christmas tree will provide a dazzling centrepiece to the city’s festive activities.

The Lord Mayor, Councillor Gary Millar, will throw the switch at 5.15pm on Friday 8 November to light up the 64 feet high tree in Church Street and kick off the city’s festive season in style.

The tree has been decorated by the company which has dressed the Christmas tree in Bethlehem and for celebrities like David Beckham, Steven Gerrard and Ozzy Osborne.

Wavertree firm, The Christmas Decorators, have used 50,000 low energy lights wrapped around the branches of the Liverpool tree to ensure there is a new look to the city’s tree. It will have 5,000 more lights than the tree at the Rockefeller Centre in Manhattan.

The Christmas tree is a Sitka Spruce and was sourced from the Kielder Forest in Northumberland by the city council.

“The Christmas tree is going to be the focal point of a lot of this year’s amazing festive entertainment,” said the Lord Mayor. “We are having many more lights on it this year and therefore it is going to be even more spectacular. It will bring a real X-factor dazzling touch to our high street this Christmas.

“It is a central part of a great Christmas season – we have ice festival, markets, great entertainment and much, much more. It is going to be a memorable Christmas and again Liverpool really is the place to be this year.”

The Liverpool Signing Choir, recently presented with the Queens Award for Voluntary Services, will provide entertainment at the switch-on ceremony.

This year the Christmas lights in the city centre, which were erected by Amey,  extend from Nelson Street to Old Hall Street.

Councillor Wendy Simon, Assistant Mayor and cabinet member for culture and tourism, said: “The Christmas tree and lights are going to provide a really spectacular display and attract more visitors to the city. It has been a real partnership effort which will make it a memorable Christmas season.”

Liverpool’s City Central Business Improvement District (BID) has paid for additional lights on the council-funded Christmas tree as well as contributing to the wider Christmas lighting scheme across the city centre, via its levy on businesses, including ‘wrapping’ Queen Square Car Park and a lite-o-rama display on St John’s Shopping Centre. There will also be a second Christmas tree in Exchange Flags.

Bill Addy, Chief Executive of Liverpool BID Company, said: ”Christmas is a magical time to be in Liverpool city centre and this year it will look better than it’s ever done – thanks in part to the expertise of companies like The Christmas Decorators. We want to put a smile on people’s faces and there will definitely be a special glow to our streets over the festive period.”

Christmas events in Liverpool city centre have been coordinated by a partnership involving the City Council’s Neighbourhood team, City Central BID, Commercial District BID, Liverpool ONE, Geraud Markets, Merseyrail and The Christmas Decorators.

Further information about the city’s festive programme is available from http://www.christmasbyliverpool.com/