Acknowledging the “deep disappointment” among the public at the lack of a Christmas lights switch-on event in Enniskillen this year, Enniskillen BID are hosting a family friendly “get-together” in the town centre on Thursday, December 1.

Originally, the official switch-on event was scheduled to take place at The Diamond, Enniskillen on Saturday, November 19.

However, on Friday, November 11 – a week before the Christmas lights were due to be switched on – Fermanagh and Omagh District Council announced that there would no longer be an official switch-on event, and that instead the lights would just be on in the town from Thursday, December 1.

The Council cited financial pressures for the delay in the lights being switched on, and the cancellation of an official switch-on event.

Strongly expressing disappointment at the Council’s decision to cancel such an event, Noelle McAloon, Enniskillen BID manager, said: “Enniskillen BID have been working very hard to encourage and implore the Council to turn the Christmas lights on during November, as has been the norm in previous years.

“Late last week, we were informed that the Christmas lights will be installed by a third party contractor.

“[The Council] has confirmed that Enniskillen Christmas lights will not be turned on any earlier than Thursday, December 1 at 4pm. BID have strongly expressed our disappointment at this decision.”

This follows the Council’s decision in October to cancel the Hallowe’en fireworks display in Enniskillen, just six days before the event was due to take place.

“This [the cancellation of the Christmas lights official switch-on] is additional disappointment from Hallowe’en,” said Noelle, adding: “The cancellation and delay of events like this has an impact on trade in town and negatively affects businesses’ turnover.


Noelle McAloon, Enniskillen BID manager, pictured with the new Christmas tree at The Diamond, Enniskillen. Photo by Jessica Campbell.

Noelle McAloon, Enniskillen BID manager, pictured with the new Christmas tree at The Diamond, Enniskillen. Photo by Jessica Campbell.


“We [Enniskillen BID] are here to improve the trading conditions in Enniskillen. It makes it very difficult when you look at social media over the weekend, and you have lights being turned on in towns across the North, and in our district we don’t even have a light up.”

In response to the “deep disappointment” among the public at the lack of a switch-on event in the town this year, Enniskillen BID is hosting a family-friendly “get-together” at The Diamond, Enniskillen on Thursday, December 1 from 4pm to 7pm.

The Christmas get-together will feature live music with Sean and Conor Magee, Christmas characters, and face painting, plus a few extra surprises – however, it will not be a Christmas lights switch-on event.

“It is just trying to bring a bit of cheer,” said Noelle.

Earlier this week, on Tuesday, November 22, a new eight metre-tall walk-through Christmas tree was erected at The Diamond by Enniskillen BID, which is a gift from the businesses of Enniskillen to brighten up the town centre.

Although the tree is currently temporarily surrounded by a wooden barrier, Noelle says that from December 1, it will be accessible to walk through.

It is understood that the new Enniskillen BID Christmas tree will be in place of the tree usually provided by the Council at the site.

A Council spokesperson told this paper: “The Council is providing 25 trees throughout the district which includes a tree at Cherry Island and also on the Dublin Road.

“An existing tree will be decorated at the Round O, and the tree in Belmore Street will also be installed. The cost of the trees is £5,563.”

There were also questions regarding the return of specific Christmas light features to the town, including the light-up swan on the edge of Castle Island that cost £12,000 in 2020, and the canopy of lights near the town hall.

The spokesperson confirmed that both these Christmas light features will return for the festive season.

“The Council does not anticipate any reduction in the number of lights displayed this year, although individual numbers may vary slightly from year to year,” they added.