Last night (Thursday 12th December 2019) saw the city lit up with the return of the Salisbury Lantern & Lights Procession.
Hundreds of lanterns and people joined the procession, which was organised by Salisbury BID and Salisbury City Council.
This is the eighth year the Lantern & Lights Procession has taken place in the city centre as part of the Christmas in Salisbury celebrations.
The procession started at Salisbury Cathedral and processed down the High Street, through the Old George Mall and into the Market Place. The Mayor and the Cathedral’s Dean led the procession with Dolphin Marching Band, who lit up the city with some festive music.
Once the procession arrived at the Market Place, participants and spectators were treated to a spectacular dance performance by local company, Elevate Dance, who incorporated fibre optics lights into their routine.
The event was kindly sponsored by Openreach, the company currently working to make Salisbury the first city in the country with universal access to Openreach’s future-proof, next generation full fibre broadband technology.
Openreach also ran a competition for the best lantern with a £500 tech bundle prize. The winner was a bear lantern, handmade by Clare Spender of Salisbury.
The Mayor of Salisbury, Cllr John Walsh, said: “I was delighted to see all the hard work of the City Council and the BID come together this evening and it was heart-warming to see so many families come out with their lanterns to light up the city.
“Everyone did such a fantastic job making their lanterns, and congratulations to Clare of Salisbury who took home the prize for the best lantern.
“Finally, a special thank you to Openreach whose sponsorship enabled us to put this event on, and it was great to see their incredible engineers join the procession with their own lantern.”
James Tappenden, Fibre First Director at Openreach, said: “We’ve hugely enjoyed being able to support this event and for some of our engineers to take part in the procession with their very own full fibre broadband inspired giant lantern.
“Our dedicated engineers are now back hard at work building a full fibre network to give the whole city access to some of the best, most reliable broadband in the UK – and hopefully giving the city something else to celebrate when we complete the build in March next year.
“We’re making great progress so if you want check to see if you can already order a full fibre broadband service, or just want to find out more about what full fibre can do for you, then please visit our dedicated Salisbury web page at www.openreach.co.uk/salisbury.”
The Salisbury Lantern & Lights Procession is hoping to return next year as part of the city’s 2020 celebrations and the organisers will be looking for a sponsor.