Festive cheer spreads in South Shields as crowds gather to watch the town’s Christmas light switch on
The switch on was hosted by BBC Newcastle’s Alfie Joey with the honour of turning on the town’s lights going to “local hero” Dr Mickey Jachuck, Mayoress Jean Copp and Santa Claus.
As well as the light switch on, crowds got to see performances from South Shields Serenity Singers and Choirmaster, Customs House favourites Dennis and Achoo, along with local musician Jen Stevens & The Hiccups who wrapped up the event.
After having no switch on event last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the town paid tribute to key workers who worked tirelessly throughout the various lockdowns.
Dr Mickey Jachuck was the “local hero” who switched on the lights and as he addressed the crowd in Market Place, he expressed how nice it was that everyone can come together to celebrate.
He said: "I’m one of many (local heroes) and we’ve got quite a few in the crowd here, I’m sure lots of people know some of our local heroes or work for our fantastic NHS.”
“I think it is great that we’re able to celebrate together and hopefully have a wonderful Christmas.”
Speaking ahead of the switch on, The Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Pat Hay commented: “The Christmas lights switch on events are real highlights of Christmas in South Tyneside and we are delighted to see them returning in their traditional format after what has been a difficult period for everyone.
“Our colourful Christmas displays are spectacular, creating a wonderfully festive atmosphere across the Borough and are sure to get the festive season in full swing.
“We are especially thrilled to be welcoming some very special people to join us on stage this year.
"Having our local heroes kick starting the festivities is a fitting way of thanking them and acknowledging the exceptional work they have done in our communities during some very difficult times.
"I’m sure the people of the Borough will show them the appreciation they deserve.”
Further light switch on events are set to be held in Jarrow on Friday, November 26 and in Hebburn on Monday, November 29.