It’s been another busy 12 months for the volunteers on the events sub-group from the Bishop Auckland Town Team.
It began in March with the Easter Eggstravaganza which included the annual ‘Easter Egg Hunt’ where there were 12 baskets of eggs in the windows of 12 shops around the town centre.
Over 25 local independent shops and businesses got involved with the town team initiative ‘Shop Local‘ over the Bishop Auckland Food Festival weekend in April.
The Classic and Vintage Car Show took place in the market place on Sunday 14th July 2019 which included music from the Tees Valley Jazz Men.
The annual Bishop Buskers Day organised by the Bishop Auckland Town Team took place in July and performers included Ami Leigh Boorman from Bishop Auckland. Ryan Lofthouse from Stanley Crook who appeared on the 2019 series of The Voice Kids. Lucy Playle playing the saxophone all the way from Easington. Big Vern and Charlotte from Witton Park and Kev Baldam from Coundon.
A new event for 2019 was ‘Buses Thru The Ages’ Classic when classic and vintage buses including United, OK Motor Services, The Eden and Lockeys took over Bishop Auckland Market Place and the North Bondgate Car Park on Sunday 28th July. This event took place in partnership with the North East Bus Preservation Trust and members of the public enjoyed free rides around the town.
The biggest event of the year took place at the end of September, with Bishop Celebrating Together. Thousands of people turned out to enjoy a variety of singers and performers on the main stage and the children enjoyed the grassed play area with giant toys and games.
The popular Hallowe’en event Monster Saturday took place at the end of October, with magic, illusions and spooky dancing.
In November, Bishop Auckland showcased a drive towards alternative ways to travel, when the Electric Vehicle Roadshow came to town. Electric bikes and cars were on display and ready to ride in Bishop Auckland Market Place, and people took up the chance to give greener transport a go.
December ended the year in style with over 30 local shops and businesses joining in with Shop Local Indie-cember by putting on a special offer throughout the month of December.
Advent Windows once again saw Bishop Auckland Town Centre turned into a giant advent calendar. A total of 24 shops and businesses all took part offering space in their windows for 24 schools, community groups and organisations to create an advent display. This year’s theme involved the construction of 24 life size models to help celebrate the unique heritage of Bishop Auckland and the traditional nativity story.
On Christmas Eve morning more than a hundred people gathered at the Stan Laurel statue at the start of a parade through the town. On arrival at Auckland Castle, all the models were assembled on the altar steps at St Peter’s Chapel and Paul Butler, the Bishop of Durham, revealed the last model of the infant Jesus which was placed in front of the contemporary models of Jesus and Mary.
December also saw a record number of over 700 children come to see Santa over the 3 Saturdays in No42 Market Place and the Newgate Shopping Centre. There was some festive entertainment from vocalists Steven Berry and Ruth Stapleton and Innovations.