By the end of this week people in Devizes will know that the countdown to Christmas has really begun.

First was the switch-on by charity fundraiser Joe Hughes on Tuesday at his home in Waylands, Devizes and tomorrow will be the lantern parade in the Market Place followed by the switch-on of the town lights.

Although Mr Hughes’ offering of snowmen, reindeer and giant Santas may not match the extravaganza planned by Devizes Outdoor Celebratory Arts it has been part of Devizes tradition for the past 16 years.

He said: “I love to see the joy on the children’s faces. It makes it all worthwhile.”

Tomorrow there will be fun in the Market Place from 12.30pm and the parade will set off at 6.15pm.It will have the theme Other Worlds to support the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Rockets, aliens, stars and planets will feature.

Anyone with a lantern is welcome to join in the parade. Father Christmas will carry out the light switch-on at 6.45pm outside The Bear Hotel.