The Haverhill Family Christmas Night is always a highlight in the town.
Thousands of visitors and residents join together to get some early festive cheer, local charities raise awareness and funds while businesses in our town centre have the opportunity to open late and join in the fun.
Working closely with Haverhill Town Council, the Heart of Haverhill, a task group set up by ONE Haverhill Partnership to promote our town centre, is this year pulling out all the stops to try and make this event one for all the family and every business.
The Haverhill Family Christmas Night takes place between 5-8pm on Friday 6th December.
A priority for ONE Haverhill Partnership this year has been to work together to illuminate our town centre once more.
Under the Heart of Haverhill banner, we wanted to use the group, and its social media platforms, to provide a digital centre for local shops and businesses to shout about their services or work together to improve our shopping centre and the local economy.
It is a work in progress but a diligent task group, meeting monthly, quickly realised that the Christmas evening was a good event to try and support organisers Haverhill Town Council, who have done such sterling work in years gone by.
Working closely with Nick Keeble, we wanted to make the event one for all the family.
Nick and his team have already done so much, this year and in many previous years, to make the evening so successful.
So alongside the fireworks and the fairground (which is now being moved to the Market Square), we were tasked to encourage more businesses out on the streets during the evening.
We also set about encouraging more activity at the top end of the High Street and organising a series of school choirs.
Finally, businesses told us they wanted the Christmas lights to be on a little earlier than the evening of the family Christmas night and we are delighted to report that this will now take place on the evening of Friday 22nd November – spreading even more festive light on our town for longer.
Working with the Unity Schools Partnership and other local schools, music will be provided courtesy of choirs of primary and secondary school age as well as the Haverhill Silver Band.
Thanks to Paul Donno, an integral member of Heart of Haverhill, and the Royal Exchange pub, a mini beer festival and live music will take place at the Arts Centre end of town.
It is all shaping up nicely.
Now we are urging as many town centre businesses to get involved by bringing their business out on the street, outside their shop, for the night. They can also decorate their window and their staff.
The more businesses that get involved, from in and around the town centre, the more successful the evening will be for all.
Our messages to businesses of Haverhill? Join in the festive fun and help kick-start a new era of our Haverhill Family Christmas Night.
By John Mayhew, Chairman of ONE Haverhill Partnership