Many of Manchester’s usual Christmas celebrations have been postponed or cancelled this year.
But thankfully Lightopia, the award-winning lantern and light festival in Heaton Park, will still be going ahead – though with new dates.
Following the government’s announcement of a national lockdown in England, Lightopia will now open on Thursday 3rd December, and extend its run until Sunday 10th January.
It will be open every day, except Christmas Day, with full social distancing and safety measures in place.
Those ticket holders whose booking has been affected have been informed directly and advised on all their options, including moving their booking to another date in December, or being offered a refund.
The visually spectacular festival will feature new installations this year, and there’s also a brand-new route for guests to explore for 2020.
With Christmas very much the theme for this year, Lightopia will use the stunning Grade I-listed Heaton Hall as its sparkling backdrop for all its festive merriment.
So you can enjoy the most wonderful time of the year with a 10-metre illuminated Christmas tree, pass by Santa’s sleigh, and make your own festive soundtrack with a giant interactive walking piano.
Lightopia is currently working with local authorities, in accordance with government guidelines, to create its socially distanced festive spectacular in Manchester.
The new route has been designed to create a safe environment, where visitors are able to see the sights safely with friends and family.
There will be wider footpaths to maintain mandatory social distancing, a one-way system, three entry points to reduce queuing, and direct access to two car parks.
Lightopia has also implemented further measures to ensure all steps are taken to keep visitors safe, including: NHS Test and Trace, with QR codes at multiple locations on the trail; pre-booked tickets only; contactless ticket scanning; card payments only; hand sanitising stations throughout the trail; increased cleaning; and more stewards to manage social distancing and assist with any visitor queries onsite.
There will also be no alcohol allowed onsite, in line with government guidelines, while all food and drink on the trail will be takeaway only.
Lightopia will be open from Thursday 3rd December until Sunday 10th January. The event is open every day, except Christmas Day. Opening times are 5pm to 10pm, and last entry is 8.30pm daily. Advance tickets are £20 for adults (£22 on the day), £13 for children (£15 on the day), and £60 for families (£68 on the day). Children under three go free, as do essential carers of disabled visitors.
There are also a limited number of tickets available for key workers, with a 20% discount off the standard ticket price, when using code KEY20 here. The 20% discount is applied to all tickets in the online basket. One essential worker ID is required for entry, per party.