CHRISTMAS gets underway in Ryedale this week with a series of fun and festive events.

The festivities get underway on Friday, November 26, with Malton Christmas Light Switch-On.

Residents are encouraged to attend the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony in Malton Market Place, outside Stew & Oyster which starts with the Charity Brass Band playing Christmas tunes at 3.50pm.

The event will be welcomed by Reverend Peter Shearsby, carols with the band and poems by the Head Boy and Head Girl of Malton School with the Mayor of Malton Cllr Kerry Ennis, switching the Christmas Tree on at 4.30pm.

The event would not be complete without a visit from Father Christmas on his sleigh at approximately 4.30pm

The fourth annual Kirkbymoorside Artisan Christmas Fair will be held this weekend.

The event provides local artists and makers from the Ryedale area the opportunity to get together to exhibit and sell their latest work.

This year’s fair will take place on the weekend of November 27 and 28, from 10am to 5pm, in the Moorside Room, Kirkbymoorside.

Pickering’s Christmas lights switch-on takes place on Saturday, November 27, from 3pm to 6pm compered by Magic Mike.

There will be live entertainment throughout the afternoon from the Kirk Theatre, St Joseph's Choir and Stape Silver Band as well as a visit from Father Christmas.

There is also a Christmas window competition and raffle.

The lights will be switched on at 5.30pm.

The Norton Santa Fun Run is back this year, on Sunday, November 28, with special guest Amanda Owen - the Yorkshire Shepherdess.

Amanda is patron of Ryedale Special Families (RSF), the Malton-based charity which is supported by the Santa run. There will be three Santa races for children aged four to 14 with an entry fee of £5 and free Santa suit, medal and certificate.

The entertainment starts from 2.30pm with games, tombola, raffle and Father Christmas sleigh.

The lights will be switched on at 4.30pm by Amanda joined by winners of the Santa races.

For further information and entry forms go to, Norton Town Council or the Yorkshire Building Society.