Last year’s “traditional” Penarth Christmas Festival Parade (a.k.a. Lantern Parade) may well have been the last ever. This Christmas the annual parade has been cancelled. Instead this year all the activity will be in Windsor Road at the Christmas Lights Switch-On to be held on November 19th

This year, Penarth’s Labour-controlled town council is proposing to axe the annual Santa Claus Christmas Parade – which in previous years has been the prelude for the annual Christmas Lights Switch-on Ceremony.

Comedian Owen Money is available to switch on Penarth’s Christmas Lights

The parade has been axed because of a reduction in the allocated budget for the event and the lack of grant-funding – following a financial overspend last year.

This year’s Penarth Christmas Lights Switch On will be held on November 19th  – the earliest date the event has ever taken place.

The famous personality said to be “available” to carry out this year’s Christmas Lights Switch-On (no definite commitment has yet been made) is  the well-known South Wales comedian and broadcaster Owen Money – who is also scheduled to appear in pantomime at the Paget Rooms.

There will be Santa parade before the Christmas Lights Switch On this year

In the previous years the annual parade has featured an open horse-drawn carriage which conveyed Father Christmas and his “partner” from West House in Stanwell Road to the special stage set up in the town centre.

The colourful parade was led last year by a hired-in freelance Town Crier Peter Taunton and his  partner

Last year, following Dave Horgan’s decision to reliquish the role,  a  freelance Town Crier and his partner were called in to lead the parade.

This year – with evidently tighter budgets – the council is being recommended by the Town Clerk to scrap the parade altogether.

Councillors in high-viz health and safety jackets normally accompany the parade shaking charity collection tins at the crowds . In 2013 the Jane Clarke Dancers in Christmas costumes strutted their stuff in the street to music from an accompanying vehicle.

In 2013 the Labour council also splashed out on hiring  a luxury limousine for the then Mayor of Penarth (now former town councillor)  Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell) to ride 750 yards through the streets waving to cheering crowds. In later years the Mayors walked  – along with everyone else.

In 2015 however the entire Christmas Festival – including the parade – was cancelled a very short notice because of the weather. It was restored in 2016.

In 2013 two real reindeer escorted the luxury Volvo limousine conveying the then Mayor Neil Thomas the 750 yards from West House to the Town Centre for the event’s climax in Windsor Road

Previous parades have also featured dancing-girls in Christmas costumes and even  a pair of real – if rather unruly –  reindeer ,  accompanied by what some residents thought was the unseemly spectacle of town councillors clad in yellow high-viz “health and safety” waistcoats –  shaking charity collection boxes at the crowd .

An internal council report says “It is planned that the traditional parade element not form part of this year’s activities” 

The Penarth Town Council’s December pre-Christmas Late-Night Shopping Event in Penarth was a dismal failure yet again last year and  has been junked for this Christmas

Also wiped from the white-board of this Christmas’s plans is “Late Night Shopping” which proved a disappointing flop last year and never really worked in previous years.

After last Christmas’s somewhat dismal Late Night Shopping Event, the Leader of the Council Cllr Mike Cuddy (Labour St Augustines) somewhat pointedly reproved his council colleagues – telling them that he had not seen many of THEM out shopping that evening.




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  1. Mrs Diff says:

    How much is Owen money being paid anyone know? Hope it’s not much

  2. Frank Evans says:

    Is that Phil Rapier in the red socialist outfit with long white beard😅

  3. DRT Andrews says:

    “……cancelled at very short notice because of the weather”. How inconsiderate of the Labour controlled weather to give such short notice.

  4. Andrew Worsley says:

    Light Switch on 19th November , turn off 20th November , they are taking no chances this year turning the lights on 19th Nov gives them a month to get it right and with previous fiascos they will need it . I love the photo of the Councillors in high viz jackets with this article , Councillor Turner looks in a very jolly and festive mood , just look at that smile!!!??? its probably his Christmas smile which is different from the smile he uses when in meetings , or the smile he uses when meeting other members of the public .

  5. Frederick says:

    £700 squid seems a fair whack for flicking a switch, not least when it would be far more relevant and ‘community-spirited’ to have the winner of the Christmas shop window display (like last year) do the honours.

  6. NickP says:

    Why don’t we just do this ourselves? We don’t need a council who can’t control spending to dictate our Christmas…

  7. Jayflan says:

    Do we need the expense of a celebrity? Let the winners of the ‘best dressed shop window’ turn on the lights – or is that a bit radical?

  8. Henrietta says:

    Why don’t they have a giant list of all the pupils in primary school in town and get the Mayor to pick a name out – would be great fun for them And everyone else I reckon

  9. Perhaps if they had taken a larger amount of money
    From the Northcliff Developers they wouldn’t be
    Scraping around for monies needed for community
    events !!

  10. Anne Greagsby says:

    What a bunch of spoilsports. Maybe they haven’t time to make up rules for the event! Can’t we have a parade without the town council?

    • DRT Andrews says:

      Yes of course. Are you going to get cracking? I’m sure the regulars on here will be prepared to pitch in.

      • Doc, You Meant It? says:

        Don’t expect any miracles. She’s a disorganiser, and her forte is to moan and whinge. When it comes down to the crux of the matter, she does the talk, but won’t do the walk. Actions speak louder than words. Christopher David is a PDN regular, but you can bet he’ll be in France on the plonk this Christmas.
        Let’s face it, if any of you were doers rather than talkers, you’d be standing for election as councillors, even if you failed to get enough votes, like Anne Greagsby. It’s just a talking shop for bored people with time on their hands. Like me, waiting to start my next project.

      • Patient Needs says:

        Are you saying people in this town are only allowed to have an opinion if they stand as councillors?

      • DRT Andrews says:

        I’m sure the good doctor doesn’t need me to speak for him/her but he/she isn’t saying that at all. The point is that there are a lot of people here, including the two named people, who are very good at shouting abuse from the touchline without actually doing anything. At least Ms Greagsby put her name on the ballot paper, with a feeble result, but the others are just grumbling malcontents who contribute nothing.

  11. DRT Andrews says:

    Well said.

  12. Doc, You Meant It? says:

    Patient Needs – you can have all the opinions you want… that’s exactly my point. This blog is haunted by windbags who can gas and blather endlessly and achieve absolutely nothing. Meanwhile, people who are elected to unpaid civic roles are criticised, accused of corruption and negligence, or incompetence, by the same whingeing, idle hypocrites, day in day out.
    Anyone can have a view on our local affairs, but when the talkers criticise the doers, without the merest hint of irony, your opinion is without value, weight or force. Just more gas to add to the funny smell.

    • Who Do You Think You're Talking to? says:

      FAO Doc, You Meant It?
      May I ask what are you contributing with your pompous, know-all assertions?
      What do you do?
      Would you prefer people to have no opinion whatsoever?
      Would that make it easier for ‘people who are elected to unpaid civic roles’ to do as they please, if nobody batted an eyelid?
      Personally, I would like to see the ‘people who are elected to unpaid civic roles’ voice some opinions of their own instead of spending time drawing up rule books to deal with rebelling natives, or letting the publicly-funded, pricey pier cinema be mothballed without so much as a squeak of protest.
      You say talkers are criticising ‘doers’. What are the so-called ‘doers’ doing exactly?
      A rather interesting, somewhat fallacious argument of yours, to dismiss an opinion as having no ‘value, weight or force’ simply because someone doesn’t sit on the council.
      I can’t imagine how history would have coped without the democratic right for commentators to offer an alternative perspective on those in power.
      Since when was irony the deciding factor in the validity of an opinion? Definitely more than a gassy whiff of hypocrisy around here, no doubt about that.

      • Doc, You Meant It? says:

        It’s a shame your reading skills aren’t as incisive as your writing skills, because your comments would make much more sense if you hadn’t poisoned the well.
        At no point did I state that opinions were invalid if someone doesn’t sit on the council. You made that part up to create an argumentative stance.
        Yet again, another windbag who wants to posture and sound off. You are quite entitled to your opinion, of course, as is everyone here – and that includes me.
        However, as I pointed out, all these complaints from the chattering armchair critics of PDN are full of sound and fury, signifying nothing, while the rest of the world quietly gets on with it.
        If you are going to criticise my viewpoint, then you should, at the very least, read it properly and take on board what I said.

      • Hamish Munnypenny says:

        The logical fallacy employed by Who Do You Think…. is a straw man rather than poisoning the well. Despite Doc not claiming that only elected councillors are entitled to an opinion, Who Do You Think has portrayed that viewpoint as the one Doc held, which is false.
        Logically, this negates the premise of Who Do You Think’s counter argument, as the argument is against a position that Doc has not presented.
        It may be that Who Do You Think… has not read Doc’s comment, but it’s more likely that any logic fizzled out when misdirected anger took over.

      • Dai Version says:

        For Doc, You Meant It?
        I, for one, would be better able to ‘criticise your viewpoint’ if you made yourself clear.
        Please bear in mind that my reading skills are limited by the reading material – i.e. your posts, from which it is difficult to understand exactly what point, if any, you are trying to make – I do wonder if your contribution may be an intentional demonstration of ‘irony’ in that it so expertly encapsulates the ‘posturing windbag’ syndrome you are keen to highlight.
        You describe PDN contributors as being ‘talkers’ rather than ‘doers’ and it is clear from your tone you don’t mean this as a compliment. If ‘doers’ equal those ‘standing for election as councillors’ and ‘talkers’ are ‘windbags… full of sound and fury’ then is it not reasonable to assume you are dismissing the latter’s opinions as invalid unless they stand for public office?
        Your accusation of ‘poisoning the well’ may well be another example of ‘irony’ at work, for it is you who has blurred the issue with unfounded accusations – e.g. that contributors here are ‘bored’ like you. I suspect many are engaged with the community, hence the lively exchange of opinion you appear so keen to deride.
        As a matter of interest, what propels you to try and humiliate those who contribute here?
        Why quell the voices of those questioning what is happening to this town?
        And who are you to call anyone a windbag?
        Fingers crossed your ‘next project’ is imminent.

      • Hamish Munnypenny says:

        Too many assumptions and non sequiturs.

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