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Jenson Button set to switch on Christmas lights

Jenson Button will be switching on the lights.

Jenson Button will be switching on the lights.

JENSON Button is coming to Frome to turn on Frome Christmas lights.

The Frome-born former Formula One World Champion will be turning on the lights as part of a specially extended Frome Extravaganza which will take place on the Friday 29th and Saturday 30th November.

In partnership with Santander, Frome Town Council is absolutely delighted to announce that they have been successful in securing the 2009 Formula One World Champion and Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver Jenson Button as part of the town’s festive celebrations this year, and to accommodate the large numbers of local people expected to come out to greet him, have taken the decision to extend the Christmas Extravaganza over two days.”

It will mean a bumper-packed start to the festive season.

Peter Wheelhouse from Frome Town Council said, “We are delighted that Jenson Button has chosen to switch on Frome’s Christmas lights this year.  This is quite a coup for the town council and we know that the community will be excited at the prospect of seeing Jenson in Frome again. We are extremely grateful to Santander who have made this happen.”

Jenson’s last visit to Frome celebrated him being awarded the first ever ‘Freedom of Frome’ accolade, and a huge crowd turned out to welcome the Formula One star, in the town where he grew up and attended school before becoming an international sporting icon.

The award is the highest the council can bestow, and Jenson was the first and so far the only person to be awarded this honour.  Frome Town Council say they are over the moon to be working closely with Santander and Vodafone McLaren Mercedes to bring Jenson home to help launch the start of Christmas in Frome, and are very much looking forward to a fantastically exciting night of entertainment topped off by his visit.

The Frome Extravaganza will be action-packed this year with a full community concert booked for Friday 29th November, taking place in the Cheese and Grain car park from 5.00pm – 7.00pm, where local acts such as Frome Community Choir, the Youth Town band and Honk Monster are scheduled to perform.

Frome Town Council say this is a true celebration of the launch of the festive period in Frome and the bringing together of local people.  The council will be working closely with local media partners FromeFM who will compere the event, and broadcast live from the celebrations. Several local food suppliers will have stalls dotted around Frome selling festive treats, primarily within the Cheese and Grain car park, and Frome cafes and restaurants are busy preparing festive menus to feed to hoards of Frome people expected to turn out.

After the concert, it is intended that Jenson will address the crowds and subsequently make his way up to the Christmas tree in the Market Place to turn on the lights, before saying a few more words.

The organisers say, “The Extravaganza continues on Saturday 30th with some great activities for the children, and street performers popping up all over town to entertain the people of Frome as they have a look around the wonderful local shops and see what’s on offer, on this the first day of festive shopping in Frome.

“The Westway will host Santa’s grotto, raising money for PAC, alongside a range of local stalls, reindeer and rides. The library will host a magician, a fantastic puppet show and festive storytellers late into the evening.  To support the array of wonderful stalls and performers popping up all over town, The Cheese and Grain will host a Christmas craft market on the Saturday before, of course, the entire town turns into a giant market all day Sunday, with the Frome Supermarket hosting their final market of the year.”

Peter Wheelhouse added, “The last weekend in November marks the first day of festive shopping in the Frome area, and this year we would really like to bring back the joy of shopping to the people of Frome. Throw out the Amazon list, and spend a bit of time exploring the wonderful shops Frome has to offer to try and find something you think your friends and family will really love, find funny or simply just useful, but make sure the gift is a surprise, after all isn’t that what Christmas should be all about?

“We are lucky enough to have a huge range of beautiful independent shops and retailers in Frome, who all stock beautifully hand selected gifts that won’t break the bank; we urge you to use this weekend to explore them.”