Brighton's Christmas Festival opens today with more than 80 stalls and attractions and lights switch-on by Eastenders star

After much anticipation and excitement, the Brighton Christmas Festival is being launched today (Friday).

Friday, 26th November 2021, 1:25 am

The Christmas market – including more than 80 festive stalls and attractions – will open from 11am at Valley Gardens in the heart of city.

Then, at 6pm tonight Eastenders legend Anita Dobson – who is star ring in the Brighton Centre panto Aladdin – will turn on Brighton’s Christmas lights in the festival’s Community Celebration Square in The Festival Hub.

Today also sees the official launch of Eurovibes, dubbed ‘Brighton’s Biggest Christmas party’ from 8pm. Book here: Eurovibes 2021 - Book tickets, hotels & travel (festicket.com)Of course, there’s also the spectacular observation wheel which has been inspiring photographers on social media. People can buy tickets on the day for the wheel, which is in the Old Steine.

The observation wheel, which is part of the Brighton Christmas Festival, will be open from today

David Hill, founder of Hove-based E3 Events which won a three-year contract from Brighton and Hoe City Council to run the festival, said he had been staggered by the high level of response.

He said: “Today (Friday) is going to be an amazing day for Brighton and Hove – the start of Brighton Christmas Festival 2021. It is going to be absolutely amazing, and we are so excited. Everything is now in place after hard work from so many people, and I wish to thank them all.

“Now we have got to make sure that Brighton and Hove celebrate Christmas in a way never seen before.”

The festival runs until Friday, December 31, and the market will be open every day from 11am until 11pm.

Actress Anita Dobson, who is starring in Aladdin at the Brighton Centre, will turn on the Christmas lights at the festival

The chalets are hand-built and there will be constantly rotating stalls selling food and beverages, arts and crafts, bars and alcohol, Christmas trees, Christmas souvenirs, and more.

David said: “We have high quality traders and local businesses taking part in our very special market.

“Brighton Gin, Bluebird Vineyard Estates, Classic Truck Coffee Company, Trading Post Coffee Roasters, Pod Experiences, Brighton Beard Company and The Waffle Market are just a few.”

Various shows, crazy golf, a fun fair, an Après Ski zone and a Santa’s grotto are among the many attractions at the festival.