Support Norwich’s independent shops this Christmas

Families are being urged to help Norwich start this festive season with a bang and to dig deep and help the city's local independent stores enjoy a fantastic Christmas.

We all know part of what makes Norwich so great is its brilliant mix of national retailers alongside its wonderfully unique independent shops - and it is up to us all to show our support to make sure this winning combination continues. This is what our Love Local campaign is all about.

There will be lots of special events to entertain families in Norwich in the run up to Christmas. We are urging everyone to make this Christmas one to remember for the city by getting involved in as many festive events as possible and to Love Local and include visits to independent retailers in your Christmas shopping trips.

Roger Pemberton, from Norwich Lanes, said: 'Christmas is a really important time for independent traders - a good Christmas can mean a good year for many local traders. We would really like to encourage people to come to The Lanes and to remember that The Lanes is a great place to find unique and bespoke gifts you may not find anywhere else.'

A key date for everyone's diary is Thursday, November 17 when the whole city will be decorated in lights. The festivities will begin with a candle-lit procession from The Great Hospital, in Bishopgate, to City Hall where former Canaries star Dion Dublin will countdown to the big switch-on. At 7pm Norwich will be lit up for Christmas and an explosion of fireworks will burst from the rooftops of City Hall and Jarrold. On the night there will also be a craft fair at The Forum while Norwich Lanes is holding a special street fair on Upper St Giles from 5pm until 9pm. The NORWICHRISTMAS Tree Art Trail trail will also be launched on November 17.

• Is your community holding a special event for the festive season? Call reporter Emma Knights on 01603 772428 or email