IT’S beginning to look a lot like Christmas around Cork city centre.
The official switching on of the lights is nearly a fortnight away but Council workers began decorating Cork streets before Halloween and the putting up of Christmas trees is also underway.
Many shops have already decorated their windows and a team of more than a dozen council staff are involved in installing Christmas lights all around the city centre.
Cork Business Association Chief Executive Lawrence Owens says the decorations are a big part of the Christmas season in Cork.
“I have never seen the lights looking as good as last year, it creates a whole buzz and atmosphere in town and that is what we want,” he told the Evening Echo. “The city will look fantastic.”
He described the turning on of the Christmas lights, which is happening this year on Sunday, November 18, as ‘a really important ceremony’.
“Historically the switching on of the lights signals the whole start of the Christmas experience in the city,” he said.
“It brings a huge feelgood factor and I suppose from a commercial side it gets the customer in the Christmas mindset and encourages them to home into the city and enjoy the shopping and the experience.”
Cork City Council has remained tight-lipped about plans for the ceremony, which has drawn thousands of people into the city in recent years.
The CBA hope Christmas shopping in the city will also be boosted by their latest initiative, launched last week in conjunction with the City Council.
The ‘Cork City Shopping’ channels on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have been created to highlight the city’s range of different shops, from retail chains to quirky independent stores, as well as promoting cafes, bars, restaurants, cultural venues and events “It is very positive so far but this is an ongoing process,” Mr Owens said.
“It is early days but I think it will be a fantastic initiative for the city, allowing people to look at a whole host of offers from many stores on one platform — be it Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.”