Category Archives: Chamber Events

Christmas Festival 2010 – The Main Event

After a very wet and snowy November and early December, organisers of the Christmas Festival were delighted that the weather started to improve in advance of the main festival day of Saturday 11 December.

Throughout the day there was street entertainment in the town. A Charity Fayre was run in St Mary’s Church with further stalls established in the afternoon in the High Street.

At 5.00pm, Santa in his reindeer-led sleigh was the highlight of the Procession which took the traditional route from the station, up through Cinque Ports Street, Landgate, Hilders Cliff, the High Street and down The Mint to Strand Quay.

The Procession was amazing, led by Rex, the Town Cryer, followed by Santa in his sleigh. Following Santa was the now established but ever brilliant Lantern Displays, built and carried by children from several local schools. Interspersed in the Procession was the Pipes & Drums band, Blocco from Rye College, and Section Five.

The Procession attracts a variety of extras, and this year was no exception, with any number of people who just wanted to get involved.

The Procession disbanded at Strand Quay, but Santa took his time mingling in the crowd. The reindeer were put a pen on Strand Quay and were a huge attraction throughout the evening.

The evening market was launched at Strand Quay which was a huge success and should become a regular feature in the future.

The Christmas Festival is something that Rye does very well, but this year it was exceptional. Well done to Roger Crouch, our Festival Organiser, and we already look forward to what Roger has planned for us next year.

Thank you too to all the businesses and residents of Rye who contributed time and money to make this year’s festival so memorable.

Christmas Festival 2010 – Lighting Up Ceremony

The Rye Christmas Festival started on Saturday 4th December 2010.

Events in towns nearby were being cancelled, but we decided to carry on.

It had snowed and rained for weeks already, and it was bitterly cold.  Small events had gone on throughout the day, with the highlight being Captain Jack lookalike, who did a marvellous job entertaining those who had braved the weather.

The Lighting Up of the Tree at The George in Rye looked like there would be no-one there, but with minutes to go, several hundred came out of nowhere. 

The Mayor gave a warming speech announcing the start of the Christmas Festivities in Rye. Captain Jack entertained the crowd, giving us a hint of the Caribbean. After three beautifully staged attempts the lights came on.

The crowd then moved down to Hilders Cliff to see the fantastic fireworks put on by the Bonfire Boys – well done guys.

Christmas had started.

Christmas Festival 2010

The Rye Chamber of Commerce is delighted to announce its plans for Christmas…

Our Festival this year supports The Oliver Curd Trust again – a wonderful charity – see

Brochures (8,000 in total) are being distributed to traders, local businesses, Tourist Information Centre and Rye Heritage Centre, local households and to local schools in week commencing 15 November 2010.

Lights on lamposts are going up already, though a number have not survived from last year.  Tesco have very kindly offerred financial support which has allowed us to purchase new lights.  Without this support, parts of Rye may have looked quite dark.  Further lights and baby Christmas trees will follow on businesses throughout Rye.

The Best Dressed Window Competition will be happening again this year and the theme is Christmas Morning. 

The Festival is throughout December with a number of events taking place – see the Brochure for details – however there are two key dates…

4th December 2010 is a dedicated shopping day with a number of shops offering much more –  from mulled wine, mince pies and discounts.  Come and find out…

Then in the early evening we have the Lighting Up Ceremony with the Mayor’s Speech, Lighting Up of The  George Christmas Tree followed by fireworks from The Salts.

11th December 2010 is the Magical Day…  From Noon there will be events all through the Town.  The shops will be open, of course, with many wonderful things on offer.  There will be street entertainment, street stalls, the Charity Fayre in St Mary’s Church, and of course the Procession through the streets of Rye with Santa and his reindeer.  Then Santa will retire to his Grotto at The Museum.  If that is not enough, there will be an Evening Market at Strand Quay.

The Harbour Master has hinted that there may be pirates landing at Strand Quay looking for Treasure – watch this space!

Shopwatch Radio Scheme

On 21 September 2010, a meeting was held at Rye Police Station to promote and encourage the Radio Scheme in Rye.  The Radio Scheme, whilst still in existence, with quite a few members still using the radios on a regular basis, needs further promotion to encourage new members to join the scheme and fight crime and shoplifting  in Rye.  The Police already have a radio and can therefore monitor radio traffic and respond as appropriate.

The Chamber of Commerce is to provide administrative support to the scheme.  Frank May is to co-ordinate the publication of promotional literature and joining forms, which will then be distributed throughout the town.  Frank May together with the Police will provide training to existing and new members.  Funds are available to replace existing equipment, namely batteries, and to increase the stock of radios. 

Traders who are interested in joining the scheme or who require assistance or training can contact the Chairmand of Rye Chamber – see “Contact Us”.