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Christmas in the Black Country

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by Andy Coleman (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer living in Birmingham. I like Classic Rock, 70s pop music, football and interviewing celebrities. Follow me on Twitter: @andycoleman9
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Towns and Cities Switch-On Their Festive Lights
Let there be Christmas lights! As the festive season approaches towns and cities are being illuminated by seasonal lights and the Black Country is no exception.

Wednesfield is leading the way by switching on its lights on November 21, between 4pm and 6pm.

Signal 107 Radio Roadshow is hosting the event in the town's High Street. The Mayor and Santa will be joined by local singer Apollo and the winner of Wednesfield's Local Community Hero Competition to switch on the lights at 5pm. Festive tunes will be played by a vintage organ provided by Brian Oliver.

The following day, November 22, it is the turn of Bilston which is marking the occasion with a full day of Christmas-themed activities.

Between 10am and 6pm there is a market in the town centre and a community craft fair at Bilston Town Hall. A carol concert takes place at St Leonard's Church from 2pm to 3.30pm when a parade moves from the town centre to the Town Hall. The Christmas lights are switched on by the Mayor, Santa and local children at 5pm.

Tettenhall's big switch-on event is at Upper Green between 5pm and 7.30pm on November 23.

Entertainment is provided by the Signal 107 Radio Roadshow from 5pm with festive tunes played by Robert Bates' vintage organ and performances from the City of Wolverhampton Brass Band and City of Wolverhampton Choir. At 7pm the Mayor and Santa switch on the lights.

The stars will be out for Wolverhampton's illuminations from 5pm 7pm in Market Square on November 27.

Panto star Joe Pasquale will be joined by Mike the Knight, a Wolverhampton Wanderers player and Santa for the switch-on which will be followed by a spectacular fireworks display.
Free Radio's roadshow will host the event and nearby mini fairground rides for the kids will be serenaded by a vintage organ.

Leading up to Christmas there are a number of free performances to get shoppers in a seasonal mood.

On Saturday December 7, 11.30am 1.30pm, the City of Wolverhampton Brass Band play in Bilston High Street.

On Saturday December 14, 11.30am 1.30pm, the Black Country Brass Band perform in Wolverhampton's Mander Centre, while from 12.30pm 2pm a community carol concert with St Peter's Choir takes place at St Peter's Church.

The West Midlands Concert Band is at the Mander Centre from 11.30am till 1.30pm on Saturday December 21.

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Why? Get into the Christmas spirit in the Black Country
When: November 21 - December 21, 2013
Where: Wolverhampton, Wednesfield, Bilston, Tettenhall
Cost: Free
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