Fenwick windows through the years ahead of 2016 big reveal

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas - with the opening of Fenwick’s festive window.

The retailer will be celebrating 45 years of their Christmas spectacle tonight at 5pm when they unveil this year’s window - the biggest outside of London.

Tonight’s big reveal, which is expected to attract thousands to Northumberland Street in Newcastle, is the culmination of 365 days of planning and up to 3,500 hours of work to bring the initial sketches to life.

The display at the flagship department store in the Fenwick group is one of the largest Christmas showcases in Europe and is firmly established as part of the North East’s festive season.

The complex and detailed process involves elaborate storyboards designed in collaboration with German company One World Studio, which specialises in creating displays all around the world.

The scenes are then transported from Berlin to Newcastle where a team of technicians, animators and window dressers spend over five days installing it.

The music to accompany each display is composed and recorded especially for it each year by a team of 30 musicians over a six-month period.

The first animated Fenwick window was installed back in 1971, inspired by the impressive window displays the Fenwick display team saw in Paris. The directors of Fenwick liked the idea of creating something similar in Newcastle and took the bold decision to devote the entire window to animation.

The debut Fenwick animated Christmas window display was based upon the popular TV series Camberwick Green and since then has featured characters including Oliver Twist, The Snowman, Peter Pan and of course Santa Claus over the years.