It’s a corker of a Christmas for Chester


Activities including the Big Christmas Giveaway, Storytelling with Santa and the Twelve Days of Christmas Parade drove thousands of people into the city centre during the six weeks prior to Christmas


Chester is celebrating a successful end to 2018 thanks to a host of Christmas events which resulted in thousands of visitors to the city centre.

Spearheaded by Chester’s Business Improvement District, CH1ChesterBID, special festive events and family-themed activities were enjoyed by Cestrians and retailers throughout the city.

Christmas in Chester Storytelling with Santa

Sprinkling festive cheer throughout the city centre, CH1ChesterBID’s very own elves, ChELFie and ELFie, could be found every weekend in December providing plenty of joyful moments for city centre shoppers and giving away free magic glasses.

Children and shoppers alike delighted as city lights and Christmas lights transformed into magical shapes including Santa, snowmen, gift boxes, stars, or trees. The glasses could also be coloured in by children, giving them a chance to win great prizes as part of the #ChesterKidsmas campaign.

Children were also encouraged to embark on magical journeys through the North Pole, New York and Arandale, via screenings of Frozen Sing-along, Elf and Polar Express at the Grosvenor Museum.

A number of youngsters also got to experience the magic of Christmas first-hand, getting up close to Father Christmas at the enchanting Storytelling with Santa at Storyhouse.

For adults, the festive calendar included the much-loved Christmas lights switch on and parade which started the festivities with style, attracting around 15,000 people, and the return of the giant sparkling ‘CheSTAR’.

Christmas in Chester Chestar

The ‘Big Christmas Giveaway’ competition was also an incredible success for the city and saw a selection of Chester’s favourite businesses giving away more than £5,000 worth of prizes to 21 lucky winners.

Judy Tagell, Marketing Manager at CH1ChesterBID, said: “People of all ages reveled in the spirit of Christmas this year, making special trips into the city centre to enjoy the events and activities that were taking place. There was something for everyone and walking through the city centre, it was wonderful to see so many smiling faces and full shopping bags.

“As a Business Improvement District, it’s important that we support our retailers throughout the city centre and drive as much footfall as possible for them. From the feedback we’ve so far received, it looks like 2018 was a great year for Christmas sales.

“We, alongside our key partners and businesses, were determined to bring the city to life for Cestrians and visitors and give them an experience that couldn’t be rivalled by other destinations or online shopping. We seem to have succeeded and are now looking forward to next year with lots more events and activities in the pipeline to get 2019 off to a great start.”

Collete Jones, from Ellesmere Port, won the final prize of the giveaway, walking away with a hamper worth more than £2,000 from the Grosvenor Shopping centre. Commenting on the win she said,  “I just want to thank you so so much! Until I heard that I’d won, I was dreading Christmas and was really struggling – now I am crying tears of joy and looking forward to Christmas with the children more than ever! This is a Christmas that will have a good memory forever.”

Christmas in Chester Competition winner

For more information about future events and activities taking place in Chester city centre in 2019, visit or follow @CH1Chester on Twitter.


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