This is when Sunderland Illuminations 2019 will start

The date has been confirmed for the switch-on of festive lighting at Sunderland’s seafront.

Wednesday, 16th October 2019, 4:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 17th October 2019, 2:00 pm
The lights are due to be switched on in November.

And now, Sunderland City Council has confirmed that the lighting is scheduled to be switched on on Friday, November 15.

In previous years, the Illuminations and Festival of Light have taken place in tandem between October and November, with the latter staged in Roker Park.

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Illumination lights on Roker seafront, ready to be switched on.

This year, for the first time, the Festival of Light will instead take place in Mowbray Park to tie in with the pre-Christmas programme and celebrations in the city centre.

This includes Keel Square’s ice rink and Hadrian’s Tipi. A number of special Christmas shows will also take place as part of the festival, and at an additional cost.

A council spokesman said: “Lighting at the seafront, Dame Dorothy and on Wearmouth Bridge is scheduled to be switched on Friday, November 15, creating a route of light connecting the seafront to the city centre.

“Lighting features on the bridge will be temporary until January, but some of the new features will be permanent and can be used year round.

“Seafront businesses will be in operation as normal, but no additional activities will be held at the seafront.”

The Festival will open in Mowbray Park on Thursday, November 21 and run until Sunday, December 22 on every Thursday to Sunday.

Sunderland’s annual Christmas Lights switch-on will also take place on the same day as the launch.

Speaking earlier this year when the changes to the Festival were announced, council leader Councillor Graeme Miller said there would be "new lighting features and attractions” to entertain the whole family.