Coming to Paisley’s Christmas Lights celebrations this year? We want to make your day of festive fun go as smoothly as possible so we’ve taken some time out to answer a few of your most commonly asked questions.

Travel

Q. What’s the best way to get to the Paisley Christmas Lights Switch-On?

Train, bus… or by sleigh, it’s easy to get to Paisley. Here’s all the best transport routes and parking info you’ll need.

Getting to Paisley Christmas Lights Switch-On

Q. Are there any road closures planned?

The parade this year will wind its way through Paisley town centre on a new, longer route. To facilitate this, some road closures and parking restrictions will be in place. You can view these here:

Road closures – Paisley Christmas Lights Switch-On

Road closures and restrictions will also see some changes to local bus routes. Check if your route will be affected:

Bus stop alterations – Paisley Christmas Lights Switch-On

The Event

Q. What time is everything happening?

We’ll kick things off at 12 noon with activities planned right up until 6pm when the big switch will take place right across Paisley town centre. You’ll be able to catch the Santa Parade when it departs at 12.30pm.

Q. Do I need a ticket to enter?

No, this is a free event and you don’t need a ticket to come along.

Q. I’m bringing my kids along. What activities will be on for them to take part in?

In short – pretty much everything! Our dedicated kids’ zone will be at Coats Venue this year; head there for free Christmas crafts and yuletide activities. There’s also Santa’s Grotto, Winter Roller Disco, the tinsel-tastic parade, family favourites Funbox performing on the live stage, a funfair and the Christmas Creative Craft Trail, taking place in cafes and eateries across the town.

Q. Will there be somewhere I can store a buggy?

This event is always really popular with families and the town centre is normally very busy so unfortunately there will be very limited storage space for buggies at our activity sites.

Q. Do I need to book anything in advance?

The only activities we recommend you pre-book are our Winter Roller Disco and places on the Christmas Creative Craft Trail. You can get tickets online for the Winter Roller Disco here. More info on the Creative Craft Trail here.
The rest of our activities will operate on a first come, first served basis. We expect the Jolly Kids Zone at Coats Venue will be popular – please be prepared to wait in line for some activities here.

Q. I always come to Paisley’s Christmas Lights Switch-On. Is there anything new this year?

The Winter Roller Disco over in County Square is this year’s new addition! There will be 6 skating sessions taking place on Saturday 16 November, costing £2 per person for a 40-minute session including skate hire.

This year’s Santa Parade route is new too! The new, longer route will give families even more opportunities to see Santa in his sleigh, admire his reindeer and marvel at this year’s four giant parade floats.

Q. What route will the Santa Parade take?

The parade will depart from Central Way on to Smithhills Street, turn right on to Gauze Street, head down St Mirren Brae on to Causeyside Street, where it will then turn right on to Witherspoon Street before heading up New Street and on to Paisley High Street, where it will make it’s way to it’s final destination at UWS. You’ll get a great view of the parade from any of these streets, so make sure you spread right out across the town. The parade will depart at 12.30pm, reaching Coats Venue at approximately 1.15pm.

Q. Is it safe for real reindeer to take part in the parade?

The reindeer in our Christmas parade are provided each year by the Cairngorm Reindeer Centre. They specialise in the care and development of reindeer and look after the country’s only free ranging herd up in the Cairngorm mountains. Their experienced handlers ensure that it is entirely safe for both the herd and members of the public to participate in and watch our reindeer parade. More information on the herd can be found at www.cairngormreindeer.co.uk

Q. What time do the lights actually get switched on at?

6pm! There will be a countdown with Santa, the Provost and this year’s special guests Reggie ‘N’ Bollie on the live stage a few minutes before, so you won’t miss it.

Accessibility

Q. I have a disability. Where can I park nearby to attend Paisley Christmas Lights?

Please be aware that some roads in and around the town centre will be closed ahead of this event. Blue Badge parking spaces are available at the following locations:

Piazza Shopping Centre, Central Way, Paisley PA1 1EL
Paisley Centre Car Park, Storie Street, Paisley PA1 2AP
Renfrewshire Council car parks (except Bridge St and Renfrewshire House)

Q. Will there be any accessible viewing areas?

For the live stage, there will be an accessible viewing platform available on Gauze Street, opposite Pendulum that is suitable for wheelchair users. Entry to this area is at the intersection of Smithhills Street and Abbey Close

For the parade, there will be an accessible viewing point available at the entrance to the Paisley Centre Loading Bay on New St.

An events officer will be available on site if you require any further support or information. To request an accessible viewing pass for either of these areas, please contact events@renfrewshire.gov.uk.

Q. Where can I find an accessible toilet?

Accessible toilets will be available at:
• Paisley Town Hall car park
• Bridge Street
• County Square
• High Street (at UWS)
• Piazza Shopping Centre
• Mobiloo located at the Cenotaph

Q. My child has additional support needs. Will you have a Quiet Space available?

We’ll have autism friendly Quiet Spaces available at POP inside the Piazza and at Coats Venue. These rooms will feature soft lighting, comfortable seating, noise cancelling headphones and sensory items. Both spaces will be available from 12noon – 6pm.

Facilities

Q. Will there be food and drink available at the event?

We won’t have food vendors at this year’s Christmas Lights Switch-On, but there are loads of great cafes, pubs and restaurants in Paisley town centre where you can enjoy a bite to eat or a hot chocolate.

Remember, around 65p from every pound spent locally, stays local – so by spending local at Paisley Christmas Lights Switch-On, you’ll be doing your bit to support independent business.

Q. What about toilets?

Yes, there will be toilets available at the following locations in the town centre:
• Paisley Town Hall car park
• Bridge Street
• County Square
• High Street (at UWS)
• Piazza Shopping Centre

Q. What if I need first aid or get separated from my party?

We’ll have first aiders available across Paisley Town Centre; a steward will be able to direct you to our first aid point at the Cenotaph should you require any assistance.

If you become separated from your party, there will also be a lost persons bus located at the Cenotaph.