A huge travelling fairground wheel will be spinning into Bolton town centre this Christmas.
Bolton Council will be bringing a 100 foot Ferris wheel to Victoria Square as part of a bumper festive package to attract thousands of shoppers over the festive period.
The giant wheel will be in town from Thursday, December 12 and it is thought that it will be the only one located in Greater Manchester during winter.
The ride, which can seat 144 people, will offer a bird’s eye view of the rolling Pennine countryside when people reach the top of the wheel and it will be lit up brightly in the evening.
Other highlights of the town centre festive programme include the return of the popular 200 square metre ice rink and a free Santa’s grotto on Victoria Square from November 30. A speciality market on Newport Street from December 12 to 15, a chance to meet real reindeer, and street entertainment will also be laid on to pull in the crowds.
Leader of Bolton Council, Councillor Cliff Morris, said he is confident that the ride and other attractions will be a hit. “The giant wheel is a fantastic addition to the town centre and something that is sure to appeal to people of all ages.
“We know how popular these attractions are from places like Manchester and Liverpool. This particular wheel is one of the biggest of its kind which travels around the country and it has visited locations including Leeds and the Etihad stadium in Manchester.
“Together with everything else we’ve got happening, it really will be a winter wonderland experience not to be missed,” he added.
Crompton Place Manager, Malcolm Angus, said: “We are delighted to be supporting the council to deliver a healthy dose of festive fun and Christmas cheer for the town.
“Crompton Place is at the heart of the community and we are always keen to lend our support to events like this which encourage people to come and make the most of all the great shopping which Bolton has to offer.
“While parents are doing their Christmas shopping with us, there will also be the opportunity to bag one of 300 family tickets for a free ride on the giant wheel and skating for an hour on the ice rink when shoppers spend £30 or more in one go at the participating Crompton Place retailers.”
From December 12, the wheel will open: Thursday to Saturday from 11am to 7.30pm; Sundays 11am to 5.30pm; Monday to Wednesday from 11am to 5.30pm. The wheel will be open on Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day from 11am to 4pm. It will be closed on Christmas Day.
The ride costs: £3.50 for adults; £2.00 for under-16s, and £2.50 for senior citizens and students. Family tickets at £7 cover two adults and two children or one adult and three children.
Joint tickets for the giant wheel and ice rink can also be purchased. Discounts apply and prices vary. Tickets can be bought online from www.visitbolton.com from Monday, October 28 and in person from box offices on Victoria Square when the attractions open.
Bolton Market is also looking for quality festive crafts, gifts and decorations traders for a four day speciality market taking place from Thursday, December 12 to Sunday, December 15. Opening times vary and deadline for traders to apply is October 30. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.