The Durham Christmas lights 2019 switch on will mark the start of Christmas in the city. Here're the details, plus information for Crook, Barnard Castle, Ferryhill, Bishop Auckland, Middleton, Chester le Street and Consett.

Seeing the Christmas lights switch-on is one of the many enjoyable Christmas activities that mark the season. With a countdown and lots of other entertainment, the Christmas lights transform the city centre and towns across County Durham and give them a festive glow.

When is the Durham Christmas lights 2019 switch-on?

The Durham lights switch on is on Thursday November 28, at 5.30pm until 6.45pm in Durham Marketplace. It's likely to be busy so make sure you arrive in plenty of time.

What will be happening?

Durham Business Improvement District says that there will be "a story brought to life through music, live action and so much more – all culminating in the breathtaking finale with the lighting of the Christmas tree". Sounds good. Previous years have included fireworks and performers.

For more Durham Christmas events, take a look at our information on the Durham Christmas Festival, the Durham Market extended Christmas opening, and the pantos at the Gala and the Consett Empire.

Here are the dates and times for other County Durham Christmas light switch-ons.

Crook winter light parade

A procession through the streets of Crook with dancers, performers, live music, lanterns, stilt walkers and large-scale illuminated puppets. The finale includes the countdown to the Crook Christmas light switch on outside Crook Civic Centre.

Barnard Castle Christmas lights 2019 switch-on

It takes place on Friday November 29 at Scar Top/Woodleigh Performance Area. There'll be festive treats from 4.30pm, the Barnard Castle Band from 5.30pm, a lantern parade at 6.15pm and the switch-on itself at 6.30pm.

Get more Barnard Castle information on our dedicated Barnard Castle page. You can also read about the Bowes Museum Christmas grotto.

Ferryhill Christmas fair

The Ferryhill Christmas fair and lights switch on is on Friday 29 November. The time hasn't yet been confirmed but we'll update the story once we hear.

There'll be a craft fair in St Luke's Church Hall, a procession to the Market Place, carol singing in the town hall gardens, and the Christmas lights switch-on itself.

Bishop Auckland Christmas lights switch-on

The Bishop Auckland Christmas lights 2019 switch on is on Friday November 29, from 4-6pm in Bishop Auckland Marketplace. There'll be a market, festive fun, stage show and the lights switch-on.

Find more Bishop Auckland information on our Bishop Auckland page.

Middleton in Teesdale Christmas fair

The Middleton in Teesdale Christmas fair is on Saturday November 30 from 10am to 2pm, at the Middleton-in-Teesdale Farmers' Auction Mart, Station Road.

The Middleton Christmas fair is held prior to the Christmas lights switch-on event in the village which starts at 3.30pm, and there is free parking.

Chester-le-Street Christmas lights switch-on

The Chester-le-Street Christmas lights switch-on is on Saturday November 30, from 1-5pm in the town centre. There'll be festive entertainment and activities throughout the afternoon, culminating in a stage show and Christmas tree lights switch-on at 4pm.

Find more Chester le Street information on our dedicated page.

Consett Christmas lights switch-on

The Consett Christmas lights switch-on is on Saturday November 30, from 5.30-6.30pm. There will be live music, festive entertainment and carol singing before the Christmas tree lights switch-on.

There will also be a Christmas jumper competition with a chance of winning a family ticket to the Christmas pantomime at the Empire Theatre. The winner will switch on the Christmas tree lights.

Read next: More family days out across the County