Christmas Lights


To create a Christmas atmosphere in the City Centre by planning and erecting the best possible Christmas Lights Display, within the constraints of the budget, from the last week in November until just after Christmas every year.

To provide an evening of entertainment for the residents of the City and visitors from surrounding areas to enjoy the ‘Switch On’ of the lights around the town and on the Christmas tree in the Market Place. This is funded, where possible, by sponsorship.  This event has been running for over ten years.

This requires the Council to ensure the proper management and maintenance of the lights and to ensure that the correct management and operational procedures are followed regarding the erection and dismantling of the Christmas Lights and also the provision of the ‘Switch On’ event.

Structure of the Committee

The Committee comprises four councillors plus the current Mayor and Deputy Mayor and two ex-officio members.  In addition, a maximum of five volunteers can be co-opted onto the Committee from the Lighting and ‘Switch On’ event groups’.

The Committee will discharge is responsibilities by:

  • Meeting regularly and reporting to Full Council.
  • Regularly inspecting, renovating and replacing Christmas lights where needed.
  • Planning and budgeting for new lighting displays.
  • Planning and budgeting for the ‘Switch On’ event, obtaining sponsorship where possible.


The Christmas Lights and ‘Switch on’ event rely very heavily on volunteers who work hard throughout the year planning displays and maintaining the lights, but especially during the erection and dismantling of the lights.  The Christmas Lights and ‘Switch On’ would not happen in Ely in the way that it does without them.  In addition, we welcome engineers from the Mildenhall Air Base who help us at these times. We are grateful to those who give up their time for the benefit and enjoyment of our local residents and visitors.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, or a sponsor, please contact or ring 01353 661016.

Upcoming Events

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