CHRISTMAS officially got under way in Battle on Saturday (November 30) with the arrival of Santa Claus to switch on the town’s festive lights.
Santa’s sleigh made its way down the High Street, pulled by the Langton Loons and accompanied by the Kingfisher Band, with the 1st and 2nd Battle Rainbows, the Battle Beavers and a variety of pantomime characters in attendance.
There was much excitement as Santa met the children in his grotto in Battle Memorial Hall throughout the afternoon before emerging to switch on the lights to much applause.
On the Abbey Green there was plenty to keep visitors of all ages entertained, with Shetland ponies, photo opportunities beside Santa’s sleigh and carol singing from soprano Lucy Ashton.
And there will be plenty more festive spirit in Battle at the town’s annual Gala Night on Thursday December 12.
Shops will stay open until 9pm, with traders competing for the best fancy dress prize, and there will be entertainment through the town from The Battle and Langton School choir, the Battle Abbey School choir, the Hastings Melodians, Lucy Ashton and friends, the Salvation Army band, Local Vocals and the Battle Choral Society, with Kevin Frost’s Soundfactory Disco promising to add something special to the evening in Market Square.
A Wealden Crafts’ fair will take place in the Memorial Hall from 4pm and the Battle Museum of Local History in the grounds of the Almonry will be open and free.
There will also be events at St Mary’s Church and the Battle Baptist Church. Parking in the Battle Abbey car park will be free for the evening and the municipal car parks are free from 7pm.
There will be free car parking in the Mount Street, Market Square and Battle Abbey car parks on the Saturdays leading up to Christmas (December 7, 14 and 21).
For full details of Battle’s Christmas events, pick up a copy of the Chamber of Commerce leaflet which is widely available and includes a shop window competition.