BICESTER will be transformed into a festive wonderland this Saturday as the town gears up for the big Christmas lights switch-on.

Organised by Bicester town Council, the Christmas lights event will see a full day of fun culminating with the mayor and a prize-winner jointly pressing the all-important button to light up the town.

Taking place on Saturday and for the second year running, the event will coincide with Small Business Saturday in a bid to help give retailers a boost.

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The fun starts at 10am with a festive market organised by One Bicester, which takes place in Sheep Street, and stalls will be selling a range of arts and crafts, street food, craft beer and festive refreshments.

During the day there will be street entertainers including roller-skating baubles and light-up icicle-bicycle, Led Drum and brass band, as well as a range of festive activities including an ice rink, toddler fair rides, a nativity farm animals and huskies from noon, while Father Christmas is due to arrive at 4pm.

The main stage will be in Market Square and will be hosted by comperes Sparky and Sprite from noon until 7pm.

There will be performances from noon by a host of local groups including students from Adele Peters Performing Arts School, Just Dance, Rhythm Street performing pop covers and Christmas tunes, Stagecoach, singer Emily Ottaway and more.

And at OYAP’s 02 Studio, at the former St Edburg’s School, in Cemetery Road, there will be a drop-in lantern making session from 2.30pm to 4.30pm followed by a lantern parade at 5pm which will weave its way around the town centre finishing in Market Square.

Then Mayor Jason Slaymaker will be invited to choose the best lantern and its owner will be invited to join him on stage to help switch-on the Christmas lights at 6pm.

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Councillor Slaymaker said: “It’s hard to believe Christmas is just around the corner, but what better way to start the festive season than to join the fun in Bicester town centre.There’s so much planned - there really will be something for everyone."

The Market Square will be closed to traffic from 6am to 10pm on Saturday.

Tickets for the ice rink can be purchased at