SHOPPERS are set to experience the magic of Christmas next weekend, as a Tamworth shopping centre not only welcomes Santa but also Julia Donaldson’s hit picture book character, The Gruffalo to town.
The festive season will officially begin at Ankerside Shopping Centre on Sunday, 26 November with Father Christmas kicking off the festivities with the opening of Santa’s Grotto at 11am.
This will be followed by the arrival of children’s favourite The Gruffalo. The mystical monster will be meeting with the children of Tamworth at 12.30pm, 1.30pm, 2.30pm and 3.30pm. He’ll be at the town’s Christmas light switch on at 5pm too!
Jeff Wigley, Ankerside Shopping Centre manager, said he is looking forward to seeing everybody get into the seasonal spirit at the centre on Sunday. “We really wanted to do something extra special to officially start the Christmas celebrations this year, so we though a visit from The Gruffalo would be perfect,” he said.
As part of the Christmas-themed event, the local community will also be able to meet Santa himself at his Grotto. “From Sunday, 26 November, he will be coming along to Ankerside every Friday, Saturday and Sunday throughout December to meet children in the area and find out what is on their wish list.
“Once the centre’s fantastic celebrations finish at 4pm, the excitement will continue at Tamworth’s Christmas light switch on in St Editha’s Square, where The Gruffalo will continue to meet his adoring fans.
“The Gruffalo is extremely popular with children in and around Tamworth, so we’re expecting to have a brilliant day to officially start Christmas and we look forward to seeing our customers having a great time throughout the festivities.
*Santa’s Grotto will be open from 11am to 4pm on Sunday, 26 November and will then be open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday throughout December. Additionally, the grotto will be open between Monday 18 December and Christmas Eve. Visitors can meet Santa, open a chocolate gift and receive a photo to take home for £3.50.